In the past few years, there has been more talk about the smart city and how connected technologies will ultimately impact infrastructure, traffic and street lights, and more. For contractors working on roads, bridges, and other city infrastructure, these systems could soon all be connected. But what does this mean for construction companies?

As the M2M and IoT (Internet of Things) grows into the Internet of Everything, it seems many processes that make a city tick would benefit from the actionable data all this technology could help collect.

One German city, Hamburg, is preparing to make the leap from ordinary to “smart.” The City of Hamburg, in conjunction with Cisco, www.cisco.com, San Jose, Calif., has begun the transition by launching several pilot projects within Cisco’s Smart+Connected Communities program that will pave the way for future innovations.

Currently planned projects include smart street lighting, a smart traffic system, environment and infrastructure sensing, and a “virtual citizen services solution,” which Cisco says will provide administrative services through a remote, high-definition video kiosk.

Hamburg and Cisco will also collaborate on developing the Port of Hamburg into a “smartPORT.” This will include an intelligent parking-space control system for trucks and loaders near the port, in addition to solutions for capturing and analyzing emissions data and monitoring port infrastructures.

In the digital age, it seems cities are in constant search for ways to foster a growing local economy and to improve current residents’ quality of life. For construction companies, this will ultimately mean implementing connected technologies in infrastructure projects.