Three of the Missions of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan directly relate to projects for smart and connected cities. From energy efficiency to mobility, from security to the redevelopment of urban spaces, to the digitisation of local authorities, the potential of the interventions included in the PNRR is very high.
 
- Mission 1: Digitisation promoting Mobility as a Service (MaaS) projects
- Mission 2: Green Revolution and Ecological Transition, with various solutions within the network of interventions enabled by Smart Cities
- Mission 5: Inclusion and Cohesion through investments in Urban Regeneration, including the reform of Integrated Urban Plans.

Let us look in detail at the work streams that could be opened and what we mean when we speak of Smart Cities.
Smart City goals and technologies

Smart City goals and technologies

Today, about 75% of the European population lives in cities (source: Eurostat). The United Nations estimates that, by 2050, 68% of the world's population will live in cities. Those cities that, according to the same report, contribute 70% of our planet's polluting emissions. The concept of the city must evolve and progress, embracing not only the objectives of economic development, but also those of environmental sustainability and energy efficiency. Digital innovation is one of the key assets for the ecological transition of cities.

Smart cities are evolved municipalities, capable of managing resources and services in an optimised manner, aiming to become energy self-sufficient and economically independent. The goal of the smart city is to improve the lives of citizens, those who live, visit, work or move around the city thanks to the use of digital technologies.

​Metropolises produce 70% of polluting emissions. With the PNRR there could be a turning point, improving the lives of citizens, those who live, visit and work in the city thanks to the use of digital technologies

A smart city is characterised by the widespread presence of infrastructures and networks that enable 5G mobile connectivity and Wi-Fi, the cloud, fixed broadband networks, smart grids, multimodal and connected transport networks, water networks and public lighting. It is characterised by sensors and IoT devices networks including smart devices, connected sensors, smart cars, smart bikes and smartphones. Elements that continuously produce data - on air and water quality, citizens' needs and movements. All data is processed and analysed through big data analytics software, as well as open data processing with machine learning and artificial intelligence. Finally, mobile and web apps that enable the creation of high value-added services for citizens.

Mission 1: Mobility as a Service and integrated urban transport systems

Mission 1 allocates 2 billion euro for Digital Services and Digital Citizenship, with a note dedicated to 'Mobility as a Service' (MaaS): an initiative to implement a sustainable mobility system, integrating different modes of transport through a single digital channel, facilitating travel in urban centres.

Mission 2: Green revolution and ecological transition in urban centres

Some of the interventions in Mission 2 see cities as protagonists of change. In fact, 9 billion euro is made available for the development of more sustainable local public transport, and the strengthening of cycling, mass rapid transit and electric charging infrastructures. Smart building projects are included in the 15 billion euro reserved for energy efficiency improvements and the redevelopment of public buildings, in which smart technologies can be adopted to reduce consumption and make them greener and more efficient. Other infrastructure digitisation measures include 4 billion euro for Smart Grids and to strengthen the electricity distribution network in a digital and flexible manner.

Mission 5: Integrated Urban Plans for an innovative, inclusive and sustainable city

Among the 9 billion euros earmarked for Urban Regeneration, around 2,5 billion euro are dedicated to Integrated Urban Plans, which are participatory urban planning projects with the aim of transforming vulnerable territories into smart and sustainable cities. This is an opportunity to promote planning synergies between metropolitan cities and smaller neighbouring municipalities, to create a more homogeneous urban and suburban fabric and to bridge infrastructure and mobility deficits.

 

 

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