Grande Prarie, Alberta, aims to be one of Canada's 'smartest' cities

by Knowlton Thomas

grande prarieGrande Praire is a small Alberta city of just 50,000. But who says smart things can't come in small packages?

The city is developing proposals to create two giant broadband networks. One will grant the public "anytime, anywhere" access to services and information wirelessly. The other will be used for "public safety," according to Postmedia News.

The city may be small but its ambition is big, as it hopes to become one of Canada's first "smart" cities.

Grand Praire has won a gold medal from GTEC, which is an annual conference recognizing technological achievements in all levels of government. 

The belief is that more and more people will live inside cities as the years go on, and "smart" cities will thrive on efficient infrastructure and sustainability. Picturing this, you'll probably get the thought of a giant metropolis - but small cities have the agility to shift technologies quickly.

Brad Emond, an IT admin for the city of Grand Praire, says small cities can better make reactive changes than larger ones, with "physical needs not as great as places like Toronto and Vancouver."

Anyone ready to pack up their bags for the praries?

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Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton is the managing editor of Techvibes and author of Tempest Bound. Based in Vancouver, Knowlton has been published in national publications and has also appeared on television and radio. Previously he was an editor for New Westminster weekly The Other Press and served on its board of directors. When not working, Knowlton enjoys hiking, tennis, and martial arts. more

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