The Fujisawa sustainable smart town is a collaboration of 18 companies

Japan's sustainable smart town to encourage community living

The development of a smart and sustainable district in Japanese city of Fujisawa has reach a new phase, focusing on cultivating opportunities for sustainable and community-oriented life.

The neighbourhood in Fujisawa, some 50km west of Tokyo, was developed by 18 technology companies including Panasonic, CCC and Tokyo Gas, and led by the City of Fujisawa.

Aiming to produce 70 per cent less carbon emissions than a conventional settlement of a similar size, the smart town is equipped with multiple renewable and energy-efficient technologies including LED lighting, solar energy generation, household fuel-cell systems as well as heat pumps and energy storage. All the various means combined will allow the town's inhabitants to optimise their energy usage as well as provide sufficient margins to keep the lights on for up to three days in case of unexpected disruptions.

Panasonic said the project, which was built on a disused industrial site, has now moved into what they call a cultivation stage, with the firms focusing on getting the smart town’s inhabitants more engaged.

"Our friends were amazed when we told them we live here," said one of the one thousand neighbourhood residents. "This town is a better environment for our children. We were little worried in the beginning, but we love having opportunities to experience new things. We've become more eco-conscious.”

The city offers a bicycle sharing scheme as well as electric vehicles and power assisted bicycles. A complex system of CCTV cameras has been put in place to increase safety and security.

The project partners plan to roll out a comprehensive healthcare system as well as encourage people to engage more with the community life by organising events and happenings.

The goal of the project, which saw the first inhabitants moving in almost a year ago, is to achieve sustainability over the next 100 years, with gradual evolution of technological and other systems.



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