The towns of Irun and Hondarribia in Spain’s Basque country are to benefit from IBM’s Smarter Cities scheme, which is designed to improve the standard of living in the participating locations.

The area known as the Bajo Bidasoa area of the Basque region, with a population of 78,000 people, is leading the way in mining patterns in vast quantities of diverse data, using real-time data to make accurate predictions, and engaging citizens via social collaboration to make the area a better place to live and work.


Basque country

Combined heat and power technology is featuring as part of the comprehensive solution package the citizenry will enjoy.

The area is generating renewable and efficient energy by installing small hydro plants, generating electricity from bio gas obtained from wastewater treatment, installing solar panels on water tanks, and building a combined heat and power facility (CHP facility) that allows the water treatment plant to be energy independent when necessary.

At the foundation of the project, IBM’s Intelligent Operations Center software provides real-time insight into all city operations. It also powers the Smart City Center, an integrated command centre where data is analysed and shared. For example, city leaders can see the correlation between water consumption and waste generation, monitor and predict the effect of bad weather on incidents within the area, or visualize the amount of resources used across water, waste management, transportation, energy and public works departments.

Town officials are working closely with IBM, Servicios de Txingudi, the local water and waste water management and street cleaning agency, and Smartland Technologies, a group of six companies including IBM Business Partner BuntPlanet.

“The possibility of analyzing large amounts of data through new technology opens up enormous possibilities for better public sector management,” said the mayor of Irun, Jose Antonio Santano. “We live in an era of global crisis and it is precisely at this time when we need to sharpen our ingenuity to better know how to apply talent and technology for the benefit of our citizens.”

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