As a pioneering and recognised global smart city, the Nice Côte d’Azur metropolitan area has made a commitment to new technologies and new sectors. It is thus pursuing a resolutely ambitious policy to improve the lives of its inhabitants, optimise city management and create jobs.
As the fifth largest city in France and ranked in 2018 in the top 15 of the world’s “smart cities”, Nice positioned itself very early on as a “smart and connected city”.
This smart city strategy is mainly focused on four areas of application: risk management, the environment, intelligent mobility and energy.
The objectives are multiple: reduction of water consumption, energy reduction, waste treatment and recovery, but also the development of an adapted multimodal transport network that respects the environment to give a better quality of life to citizens and participate in the protection of the climate.
There are many Smart City initiatives in the area, which have led the Nice Côte d’Azur Metropolitan area to strengthen its collaboration with major industrial groups, local SMEs and start-ups, particularly those linked to the French Tech network, as well as with the world of research and education.
A dynamic process launched in 2010!
- 2010: In a European preview, implementation of the first service package based on NFC (Near Field Communication) technology.
- 2011: Nice Côte d’Azur wins the Smarter City Challenge sponsored by IBM.
- 2012: Nice experiments with the Smart Grid and organises the first international Innovative City trade fair in Nice.
- 2013: Nice launches the virtual City Hall Spot with Cisco to simplify access to administrative procedures and the connected boulevard.
- 2014: Nice creates a Smart City Innovation Center, the first French platform to bring together research, education and leading companies in the smart city.
- 2015: Nice was awarded the French Tech label and in September inaugurated “27 Delvalle”, a headquarters for connected health and the Silver Economy
- Also in 2015, Nice was ranked in the Top 5 smart cities in the world by the American research firm Juniper Research
- 2016: Nice was awarded the IDEX 2016 label as well as the Smart Innovation 2016 trophy and the Silver Decibel 2016
- 2017: Nice was one of the 10 finalists for the European Capital of Innovation 2017 award
- 2018: Nice declared an ambassador city for innovation in Europe for its role as a research laboratory for innovative solutions driven by citizens.
- 2019: the Metropolitan area Nice Cöte d’Azur receives the “Grand Prix for the smart city initiative of the year” at the Palmarès Smart Cities 2019 La Tribune. This prize was awarded in recognition of the global vision and policies pursued in terms of smart city by the Nice Côte d’Azur metropolitan area, and the completion of the new tramway lines 2 and 3. Nice was also the only French city selected in the short list for the European Capital of Smart Tourism Award that same year.
- 31 December 2019: The Nice Smart Valley smart grid system came to an end after 3 years of experimentation. This French demonstrator of the European InterFlex project, co-financed by the European Commission as part of the H2020 call for projects, aimed to lead to the industrialisation of innovative solutions on the electricity network in France, but also in Europe, to accommodate decentralised renewable energies and new uses of electricity, such as electric vehicles, which are likely to cause constraints on the distribution network infrastructures.
Some key figures
The entire Alpes-Maritimes department is firmly committed to an intelligent city approach. Born of the convergence of ICT and renewable energies, intelligent electrical networks, in particular, are at the heart of the work of two reference clusters, SCS (Secure Communicating Solutions) and Capenergies (energies that do not generate greenhouse gases).
- 638 eco-companies in the Alpes-Maritimes
- 6,760 eco-activities jobs
- 50% of the companies are in the energy sector
Sources: Team Côte d’Azur
Experimentation and business incubator
The Côte d’Azur is a field for large-scale experimentation.
A dozen experimental projects, both national and European, are underway, making the Côte d’Azur the leading territory for these experiments in France. Companies are encouraged to participate in these projects and to exploit the Open Data collected by the local authorities and the demonstrators.
Various talented start-ups (Qualisteo, Mobendi, Skavenji, Sustain’air…) have specialised in the control of energy consumption for the creation of new products dedicated to smart cities. The Centre d’accueil des entreprises innovantes (CAEI), welcomes start-ups on these themes within the Nice Ecovallée business incubator.