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How Downtown Phoenix is ​​harnessing the power of twins to create a more sustainable, prosperous and inclusive future




Many Phoenicians are very excited about the ongoing changes in their hometown and want to help shape a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous future.

Downtown Phoenix, Inc. is a non-profit organization whose mission is to help the 90-block core of Downtown Phoenix grow sustainably and comprehensively. Is in a unique position to make a difference in places with a rapidly changing city core. “We are building a central city that has never existed in decades, and we are in a place that will help us determine the future of downtown in the way that many cities have already done,” said Sarascoville Weaver. Says. Senior Business Development Manager at Downtown Phoenix.

An influx of talented and passionate people has helped rethink downtown Phoenix. This is because decades of flight from downtown Phoenix have been reversed in the 21st century. The transformation begins with the creation of a large activity generator, including two major sports arenas, theatres, the downtown Arizona State University (ASU) campus, the University of Arizona School of Medicine / Phoenix, and the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, and the expansion and upgrade of Phoenix. I did. Convention center.

The revival of downtown Phoenix from the early 2000s continued with the advent of local small businesses, art galleries and housing densities. This includes landfilling vertical homes and repairing nearby historic homes.

ASU has played a remarkable role in bringing more than 15,000 students to the heart of downtown Phoenix. This helped create a downtown community focused on innovation and entrepreneurship, with a deep commitment to serve the public interest in times of rapid and complex social change.

ASU has been ranked number one in innovation for seven consecutive years by the US News & World Report, surpassing schools such as Stanford and MIT. ASU’s culture of innovation is intentionally designed to benefit Phoenix. “In our Charter, we have a fundamental responsibility to serve our community,” said Chris Richardson, Deputy Chief Information Officer of ASU. “We have the freedom to apply that innovation mindset to benefit the health of the community and support this through the ASU Smart City Cloud Innovation Center (CIC) with Amazon Web Services (AWS). increase.”

Launched in 2019, the ASU Smart City CIC combines ASU’s outstanding research with AWS cloud, technology and innovation expertise to promote community engagement, address climate change, accelerate and more with cities. A long-term partnership that addresses the most pressing challenges of the region. Improving economic activity, and education and health care.

Innovative work led by ASU Smart City CIC includes Downtown Phoenix, Inc. Includes the development of a digital twin platform. “The best way to think of a digital twin model is like a 3D canvas of data. You can connect to any object in the model, whether it’s a building, a floor or an object in a building, or any data system.” Said Michael Jansen, Chairman and CEO of Cityzenith. “In collaboration with ASU Smart City CIC, we will build a digital twin of Downtown Phoenix and utilize AWS technologies such as storage, computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning (AI / ML), and Internet of Things (IoT) to build data. Enhanced driven. Make comprehensive decisions while visualizing the impact of those decisions on the future of the city. “

Data that was once stored in static Excel or PDF files and is now available only to a single city sector or private company can now be aggregated into a digital twin. This has many potential benefits, among other things, it allows you to create 3D visualizations that allow citizens, businesses, policy makers, and other stakeholders to quickly see the relevance of their data.

“Decision makers don’t have the time to look at large amounts of data. They want to see it quickly and understand its implications quickly,” said Scoville-Weaver. increase. “One thing is that downtown needs more day care facilities, and another is the display of a map that doesn’t contain any day care in the light rail corridor.”

But the value of digital twins isn’t just about aggregating otherwise siled data and visualizing the world as it is today. It also enables analysis and simulation of policy and investment decisions that help accelerate and optimize decisions that benefit downtown Phoenix. For example, Phase 1 models where all day care is, then models population data and decomposes it to figure out where the primary school is, and finally applies tools to identify it. Start telling you where those day care centers should be based on your trends.

Digital twins help make better decisions on everything from adding pedestrian-friendly streets and bike traffic to historic preservation and sustainability measures to helping businesses relocate to downtown Phoenix. You can use it. This work is largely backed by the expertise of ASU professors and researchers. But beyond technology, Scoville-Weaver and Richardson of ASU felt essential because the AWS-powered ASU smart city CIC was unique in helping them collaborate and identify challenges that needed to be resolved. It provided a methodology.

The center utilizes Amazon’s Working Backwards process, which is used to develop its products. This is an innovation process that is clearly not technology-focused. Rather, it begins with a deep understanding of the needs of humans (that is, customers) and works in the opposite direction to create the right solution to address those challenges. Jason Whittet of AWS said: Leading digital innovation at the ASU Smart City Cloud Innovation Center. “We ask questions about who we are trying to help, what are their problems, and so on, and we go back from that starting point.”

This is a process that already connects people and, along with the digital twin, ultimately leads to more influential policies and business decisions. “I think the biggest goal of the digital twin and AWS process is to involve citizens, neighborhoods, businesses and cities and say that this is the city we want to see. This is more for us all. It’s the kind of data you need to create good things. City. “

Importantly, the Downtown Phoenix Digital Twin Initiative complements and enhances similar work that the city has pursued. For example, the Phoenix City Government is implementing smart city applications that facilitate access to government services through early digital twin technologies such as mapping and GIS (Geographic Information System) databases.

The city-wide aspirations are in line with the aspirations of downtown Phoenix. Tony Motra, Senior Policy Advisor at the Phoenix Office, said: Mayor of Kate Gallego. “This can include complex infrastructure projects that are bound by the strict rules of engineering, traffic management and mitigation, and city planning.”

To stay up to date on this project and learn about other challenges, visit the ASU Smart City Cloud Innovation Center website.




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