American City & County: A View from the Front Seat

Christy Gillenwater

Smart cities: once science fiction, now the foundation of community success. Every day, economic developers ask how they can swiftly engage smart city stakeholders as cities rapidly advance. As technology transforms the global economic landscape, cities like Chattanooga, Tenn., demonstrate that the best way to drive economic development is to lead the charge toward a smarter future.

Smart city projects harness modern technology and data, often with the goal of elevating all citizens regardless of zip code, tax bracket or educational attainment. Economic developers assess how smart city projects will offer a lasting impact on the city’s residents: better transport to jobs, easier access to doctor’s appointments and smarter logistics. Today, these projects offer community leaders a once-in-a-generation opportunity to help level the playing field and support all members of our communities. We have entered an exciting new era for economic growth in American communities – one that will look and feel quite different from the past.

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