The city of Tel Aviv won the World Smart Cities Award on Wednesday, trumping over 250 other cities bidding for the title.
The award, given as part of the annual Smart City Expo World Congress held this week in Barcelona, recognized the White City’s initiative in undergoing what Mayor Ron Huldai hailed as a “digital revolution.”
The flagship project of the city’s efforts is the pioneering Digi-Tel platform, a residents’ membership club and app that provides individually tailored, location-specific information and services.
The platform creates a direct connection between the city and its residents, providing services ranging from neighborhood road works alerts to discounts, offers and information based upon individual interests.
Over 90,000 residents have signed up for the membership club to date, Israeli Ynet news site reported.
The city’s efforts to position itself as the Start-up City also included opening up municipal databases to the public in an attempt to increase transparency, as well as offering free WiFi throughout the city – even at the beach.
“I am pleased the municipality was recognized for its use of technology and creativity found so abundantly in the city,” Huldai said.
Tel Aviv’s booth at the expo showcased the city’s technologies, in cooperation with high-tech companies such as Motorola Solutions Israel and Microsoft.
The Smart City Expo, established three years ago, is a leading international convention aimed at fostering municipal innovation. Last year, Rio de Janeiro was the recipient of the Smart Cities Award.