SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA, January 31, 2019 – “Smart Crosswalks” will be built later this year in the neighborhood of the Seongdong-gu, which feature LED signs on the road so to protect “smombies (smartphone zombies),” or pedestrians who walk without attention to their surroundings because they are focused upon their smartphone, from fatal car crashes.
Meanwhile, the district of Yangcheon-gu will be installing “Smart Plugs” at the houses senior citizens live alone. The device monitors electricity uses and, when the TV or the lights remain off for a certain period of time, sends a message to social workers who will promptly visit the house and provide needed care.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government designated these two districts as the Smart City Special Zones that serve as testbeds for high-tech solutions to the various problems in the city. The Seongdong-gu will have more focuses on tackling traffic and safety issues, while the Yangcheon-gu focuses on welfare and the environment.
A total of 3.6 billion won (3 billion from the city and 0.6 billion from the districts) has been set apart for the next three years from 2019 to 2021. The Seoul Metropolitan Government will provide networks and data management system needed for the program. The two districts will take charge of implementation and management, based on the opinions of citizens and experts.
Seongdong-gu’s Smart Crosswalks consist of two main components: LED lightings embedded into the road and a crosswalk spotlight system. They not only allow pedestrians to clearly recognize the stop line and signs, but also signal where the crosswalk is to the drivers, nudging them to slow down. Other than installing Smart Plugs for the elderly, the Yangcheon-gu plans to adopt customized “Smart Security Lights,” which sense malfunctions on their own and report them to managers via IoT networks.
Customized Smart Security Lights: The lights will be customized for various community needs. Some of the lights, fitted with smart security cameras, can detect human movements to prevent fly-tipping and illegal parking. Other lights may have LED beamers, or Logojectors, attached to them. Phrases and images beamed on the wall or the ground can discourage citizens’ wrongdoings. The lights will also be accompanied by environmental sensor systems that monitor noise, humidity, temperature, and air quality.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government plans to analyze the data produced in the two Smart City Special Zones via the Seoul City-Data Managing System, and open it to the public and private companies through the Digital Civic Mayor’s Office and Seoul Open Data Plaza. The data will be analyzed and processed as an important item for high tech services and policy making.