Pickering Named ‘World’s Top 21 Smart Communities’ for Second Year in a Row

Posted on Wednesday December 13, 2017

For the second consecutive year, the City of Pickering has been named one of the world’s Smart21 Communities of 2018 by the Intelligent Community Forum. The Smart21 program recognizes the global elite municipalities that are successfully leveraging the power of technology to create a more connected, engaged, vibrant, and sustainable community.

“This back-to-back recognition is reaffirming the work we are doing to strengthen our technological and community infrastructure in order to attract the best and brightest residents and businesses to our City,” said Mayor Dave Ryan. “Pickering was a key part of Toronto Global’s recent Amazon HQ2 bid submission, and being named one of the world’s top smart cities can only boost our chances of landing large multinationals like Amazon.”

The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) is a think tank based out of New York City that is comprised of a global network of cities and regions.  The ICF received several hundred submissions from around the world for the Smart21 Communities of 2018 awards program, and announced the winners at the recently held 4th Annual Next Gen Tech Conference.

The ICF has identified six indicators critical towards building an Intelligent Community:  Broadband; Knowledge Workforce; Innovation; Digital Equality; Sustainability; and Advocacy.  Some of Pickering’s winning Intelligent Community initiatives include:

  • Connected Pickering is a holistic program that is working towards open and equitable access to the Internet for residents, businesses, and visitors
  • Dig Once Policy was adopted by City Council and will ensure that fiber optic conduit will be installed in all municipal road reconstruction projects
  • Coder Girlz was launched to promote coding and digital skills to youth as females are vastly underrepresented in STEM industries and training institutions
  • To enhance and promote community engagement, Pickering 101 is a free 8-session course designed to educate residents on how their municipal government works

“Our challenge as staff is to help build the framework for a more intelligent community ecosystem,” said Dale Quaife, Manager, Information Technology, and Project Lead, Intelligent Community Initiative. “We provide the services that touch the everyday lives of our residents, so we must ensure that we are able to connect to, engage with, and serve them in new and innovative ways as technology continues to evolve.”

Visit pickering.ca/smart for more information on Pickering’s Intelligent Community initiatives.

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As the gateway to the east GTA, Pickering (population 94,000) is strategically located where Toronto, York and Durham Regions meet. Recognized by the Intelligent Community Forum as one of the world’s top Smart21 Communities, Pickering is slated for significant economic and residential growth; offering an unparalleled quality of life for those who live, work, and play here. Its dynamic City Centre has been designated by the Province of Ontario as both an Urban Growth Centre and Mobility Hub, and continues to evolve as a preferred destination for creative learning, memorable events, and unique experiences at the heart of a vibrant, connected, and engaged community.

Media Contact:

Mark Guinto
Manager, Business Development & Public Affairs | Office of the Mayor
905.420.4660 ext. 2013  |  1.866.683.2760
mguinto@pickering.ca