Stockholm and the surrounding area is one of the fastest growing regions in Europe. Over the past 10 years, 323 000 people have moved to the capital of Sweden. To put this in perspective, that number is equivalent to the population of the third largest city in the country, Malmö. As urbanization accelerates, the streets that run through Stockholm are getting busier, are being worn down more quickly and have to be repaired more often. Potholes, traffic congestion and countless road works are amongst the many challenges that the citizens of Stockholm must encounter every day. As a result, the demand for technological innovation within areas like city monitoring and mobility is higher than ever in the Swedish capital.
In early 2020, Univrses started working with Stockholms Stad. The aim was to use Univrses’ 3DAI™ City to address some of the challenges experienced by those responsible for managing Stockholm. In particular, the need for relevant, timely and actionable information about the city. With the data from 3DAI™ City, problems in Stockholm can be detected and solved quickly; with enough data, some problems can even be anticipated and avoided. The objective is to increase the understanding of how the city works, and what can be done to facilitate everyday life for people living there.
To deploy 3DAI™ City, Univrses worked with the largest taxi company in the city, Taxi Stockholm. Smartphones equipped with Univrses’ computer vision algorithms were deployed to the Taxi Stockholm fleet. As the taxis operate in the streets of the Swedish capital, a constant flow of real-time data about Stockholm is delivered to those managing the city.
Initially Stockholm Stad is focusing the system on detection and monitoring of traffic signs. This will help city managers to create an up-to-date inventory of the signs they are responsible for as well as understand which signs need to be repaired or replaced. It will also ensure signs reflect current road regulations.
Stockholm Stad will also use the system to detect vehicle and pedestrian density. This will enable inference of traffic and pedestrian congestion over time. Pedestrian flow is particularly relevant for the city in a time where social distancing has become the primary tool for controlling the spread of disease.
Maria Roslund, project manager and engineer at The Traffic Administration Office in Stockholm, is optimistic about Univrses’ technology:
3DAI™ City aligns perfectly with our investment in introducing innovative solutions for a smart city. To develop the road network in Stockholm, we need to gather data about its 3900 streets. We believe that 3DAI™ City can help us do this in an efficient and objective way.
As the collaboration between Stockholms Stad and Univrses continues, more areas of use will be explored. The plan is to roll out the system more widely and focus on additional features that can help to make Stockholm smarter. This collaboration demonstrates how the skills of tech start-ups can be combined with the vision of City Governments to develop the urban landscape and bring benefits to individuals and society in general. Not only does 3DAI™ City offer solutions to challenges that await Stockholm as it expands, it is also a huge step forward for international Smart City development.