“The ageing concept of smart cities has largely failed to deliver its promises. New approaches are required in the form of more scalable, holistic, and effective solutions to transform smart urban infrastructure and accelerate its deployment,” says Dominique Bonte, VP for verticals and end markets at ABI Research.
He opined that Smart Corridors and Smart Poles are expected to redefine the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and the wider Smart Cities markets.”
Global investments in smart pole and smart corridor technologies will grow from US$10.8 billion in 2022 to more than US$132 billion in 2030. ABI Research estimates that more than 10.8 million smart poles will have been installed by 2030.
Smart poles are multi-functional aggregation points for smart urban infrastructure, built on top of smart streetlights and connected utility poles.
They represent a cost-efficient, scalable, and modular framework for deploying the whole spectrum of smart urban infrastructure, ranging from 5G small cells (in the form of cellular network densification) and Wi-Fi hotspots to surveillance and traffic cameras, signage and information displays, air quality and flood monitoring solutions, and charging points for two- and four-wheel vehicles and drones, including renewable energy generation.
The new concept of smart corridors refers to technologies such as Cooperative Adaptive Traffic Lights (CATL) and roadside infrastructure enabling autonomous driving on 5G-enabled cross-border highways and optimizing traffic flow, road safety, and sustainable transportation across longer distances.
Premium signal priority for freight and delivery vehicle pre-emption will offer new monetization opportunities for governments and road operators, ultimately leading to dedicated freight corridors. Key smart corridor government initiatives include the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF2) digital program for funding and deploying 5G corridors and the U.S. Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL).