April 22, 2014
Featured by Fast Company.
So-called “smart” cities and communities are sprouting around the world, from the urban laboratory that is the Spanish port city of Santander to a huge residential energy research project that has been running for years in Austin, Texas.
Now a new “quantified community” built from scratch is taking shape, and it’s on the biggest stage yet: The Hudson Yards, the largest private real estate project ever in the United States, which began construction on Manhattan’s underdeveloped West Side last year.
When all stages are completed, the 65,000 people daily who pass through the Hudson Yards’ office towers, residences, shops, restaurants, hotel, public school, and public open space will contribute to a massive stream of data intended to help answer the big questions about how cities of the future should be managed.
“What is really unprecedented is the scale of the development and the fact that it is being built from the ground up,” says Constantine Kontokosta, deputy director at NYU’s Center for Urban Science and Progress. “It really started from the question: If we could know anything about the city, what would we want to know and how could we do a better job at measuring the pace of life?”
NYU is collaborating with the two developers of Hudson Yards–the Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group–to create a “data-rich research environment” that will feed information about everything from air quality to how many steps residents take each day.