AT&T Smart Cities: Transforming Communities and Creating Value for Citizens

Introducing water sustainability solutions, new spotlight city and more strategic alliances

by The AT&T Business Editorial Team

AT&T* smart cities momentum continues since announcing our framework a year ago. Our Smart Cities framework uses a secure, holistic approach to helping cities improve functions like transportation, lighting, safety and sustainability.

We have committed to test our framework in several spotlight cities and universities, which include Atlanta, Chapel Hill (NC), Chicago, Dallas, Georgia Institute of Technology, Miami-Dade County and Montgomery County (MD).

We’ve also added a new spotlight city to our smart cities program: Portland, Oregon. And we have added more leading technology companies to our smart cities alliance—CIVIQ Smartscapes, HydroPoint, MetroTech and Streetline.

“More than half of the world’s population lives in an urban area. As an Internet of Things and smart cities leader, we see the impact technology has on helping cities address the issues facing their communities—and their citizens,” said Mike Zeto, general manager and executive director, AT&T Smart Cities. “Collaborating with the cities and our strategic alliances puts us closer to making smart cities a reality.”

Water Sustainability

With a greater global need to focus on water sustainability, we are focused on delivering water solutions that help cities utilize IoT technologies to address this growing concern.  One way we’re doing this is with our smart irrigation solutions, which use weather data analytics to help irrigate landscapes more efficiently, resulting in cost savings.

And to help reduce leaks in water systems, we offer technology that uses acoustical IoT sensors on our cellular network to help pinpoint the location of leaks in pipes. We are also working on solutions that will help cities address water quality issues.

Spotlight City Update

Over the past few months, we’ve worked with our spotlight cities to identify their unique challenges. We then developed a comprehensive strategy to tackle them. We’re currently deploying solutions in three of our spotlight cities: Miami-Dade County, Atlanta and Chicago.

Miami-Dade County

Miami-Dade County is the first to launch our Smart Cities Operation Center. The platform gives municipality leadership visibility of their communities’ conditions—all from one location and in near-real time.

We’re also working to apply solutions that address intelligent lighting and smart transportation. And, in collaboration with our alliance member Hitachi, we are excited to deploy public safety solutions in our communities.


  • Remote monitoring and more efficient operations solutions for police and public safety officials.
  • Upgrades to the county’s existing lighting infrastructure with smart LED lighting.
  • Reliable data to help inform decision making around urban transportation planning.
  • A traffic intersection network solution to help improve traffic flow.

We’ve also committed to use our spotlight city program help address the Digital Divide. In particular, we’re launching a program later this month at one of the County’s public housing communities. Together with Ericsson, another smart cities alliance member, we will provide 60 laptops for students and adults in the community to use in the community center, while also equipping the center with Wi-Fi connectivity. Miami-Dade students living in this community will now be able to log on to the Miami-Dade County Public Schools web portal to access their schoolwork while away from school. And adults in this community will have access to web content that can provide enrichment to their lives. 

“AT&T is helping us deliver impactful solutions for our community. We now have meaningful solutions for public safety and traffic management. And we’re enhancing the lives of our residents,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez.


We’re making great progress on the City of Atlanta’s smart cities roadmap. A major focus is on the city’s North Avenue corridor project. Atlanta’s North Avenue corridor borders the Georgia Tech campus and is in the heart of the city’s business and theater district. Atlanta is using the corridor as a test bed for numerous technologies.

“Data is key to building a smart city,” said Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed. “As one of the first cities to join AT&T’s smart cities program, we realized having highly secure, reliable access to near real-time data is a game-changer. This will help improve the lives of our residents, while addressing the current and future needs of our city.”

Another key area of focus for the city is intelligent lighting. Together with GE and Georgia Power, the largest subsidiary of Southern Company, we’re working to bring intelligent LED lighting solutions to the city that will ultimately help improve public safety conditions and create greater efficiencies, including maintenance costs. GE and Southern Company are both members of our smart cities alliance.

“We’re focused on developing new technologies that evolve our business to deliver the innovative energy solutions our customers want,” said Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power. “We are proud to be part of collaborative partnerships like the Smart Cities initiative which are making our communities better places to live and work.”


Our latest pilots are designed to keep Chicago residents and tourists more productive, engaged and informed as they move about town. The solutions rolling out later this month include:

  • Smart digital transportation boards in Chicago O’Hare International airport – The smart digital display will help travelers with their ground transportation planning. Boards located near airport baggage claim will show the fastest and lowest-cost routes into the city. Reliable AT&T network connectivity will source real-time information so travelers can determine their best mode of transportation.
  • Connected bus shelters in several Chicago communities – Connectivity will increase productivity and help create a safer, more inviting environment. Select bus shelters will have free Wi-Fi, intelligent lighting and digital displays to inform commuters of the next bus arrival. 
  • Interactive touch-screen information kiosks – Chicago has many popular tourist spots, but the city also has hidden gems. The kiosks will help visitors find local points of interest, and directions to get there. The kiosks will also feature USB charging ports and offer free public Wi-Fi services.

“Without question, Chicago is a great city because of its people,” said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “Our ongoing collaboration with AT&T to deploy smart cities solutions is one way we’re working to make Chicago smarter, safer and more sustainable for residents and visitors alike.”

For more information on our IoT solutions for Smart Cities, visit: And to learn more about our citizen and sustainability efforts, visit our Connect to Good site at

*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

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