C Spire will test out smart technology in Ridgeland this fall.
C Spire will test out smart technology in Ridgeland this fall.
RIDGELAND — The city is partnering with C Spire for a new trial this fall involving “smart city technology” that includes lighting and traffic analytics.

The trial is planned for October and November at no cost to the city.

The announcement was made Wednesday at the Mississippi Municipal League’s annual conference in Biloxi.

C Spire officials say cities will spend $41 trillion over the next 20 years upgrading infrastructure systems and much of that may come in the way of smart technology.

“Our community is well-known across the state for our award-winning master plan that guides our smart development efforts and our commitment to healthy lifestyles and green spaces,” Ridgeland Mayor Gene F. McGee said.

“This is a new way of thinking about how we use technology to make quality-of-life improvements our citizens want and need.”

He added, “A smart city can optimize traffic flow and commerce on congested roads and arterial streets through data analytics and connected signal sensors, saving time, fuel and operating costs.”

Headquartered in Ridgeland, C Spire also selected the city as one of its first to participate in the ongoing Fiber to the Home initiative.

“We’re excited about taking the first step to bring smart city applications to communities like Ridgeland,” Craig Sparks, vice president of Technology Strategy and Planning for C Spire, said.  

“This is not so much about deploying many disparate applications, but developing a broader vision to help cities become more efficient and reap important financial, social and environmental benefits.”

McGee said Ridgeland will measure the success of the trial and develop future potential forays into smart city technology based on increased efficiencies, cost benefits, quality-of-life improvements for residents and economic development opportunities for businesses.

C Spire will then in turn use the trial to guide its statewide effort on smart technology and focus on everything from smart lighting to smart tourism, Sparks added.