Big Data to the rescue in Miami-Dade County, Florida

Fri, 2013-03-15 14:46 -- Liz Enbysk

Miami-Dade County Florida and IBM are keying on data analytics and cloud computing to improve predictive management capabilities of systems tied to law enforcement, transportation and water to help leaders make better decisions.

The smarter cities initiative's aim is to improve services for residents and to help agencies share information among the 35 municipalities within the county.

Through the use of an intelligent dashboard from IBM that provides visibility into operations, city and county leaders will soon be able to harvest massive amounts of information from one department and immediately share it with multiple departments to improve access to valuable and often time-sensitive information.

“Making Miami-Dade County more efficient and cutting the red tape that slows economic progress are priorities, and this initiative with IBM is a great way to accomplish both of those goals,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “We look forward to making vital data more accessible to our municipal partners and to serving our residents even better.”

Like other government bodies worldwide, Miami-Dade County faces budget constraints, aging infrastructure – and a need to deliver more services with fewer resources. It's hoping to solve many of its biggest problems with advanced technologies and public-private partnerships.

Initiatives under way include:

  • Water Management -- A predictive analytics and smart metering project to help remotely monitor consumption and identify water leaks across the Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department is expected to reduce water consumption by 20% and generate up to $1 million in savings per year which can be reallocated back into parks services for residents.
  • Intelligent Policing -- Technology for intelligence analysis, lead generation and criminal identification and investigation is helping Miami-Dade Police Department reduce the time it takes officers to identify leads, investigate crimes and solve cases (pdf) and remove barriers to information sharing with other law enforcement agencies.
  • Government Transparency -- Consolidated analytics across finance, human resources, budgeting, planning and all transactional departments provide county employees access to reporting and analysis tools to help make better decisions. The cloud-based system also provides the county’s three million residents financial transparency and access to key metrics and detailed spending information via the Internet.
  •  Transportation Efficiency -- Providing real-time updates via new mobile phone applications and applying analytics to better understand traffic patterns and ridership on public transit will help prepare for future growth without investing in new infrastructure projects. A pilot transportation project will help improve traffic flow and drive economic development for local business in the Brickell community through increased ridership on public transit and bringing more people into the county's parks.

 "Many cities around the world are reaching their limits and they are looking for ways to make their region more competitive and provide higher level of services to citizens," said Michael J. Dixon, General Manager, IBM Smarter Cities. "Miami-Dade County's leaders are demonstrating the vision and ambition to bring their community together to improve the efficiency of one of the world’s most prominent counties."