The National Building Museum (NBM) is launching a year-long initiative that will gather and analyze data on how new technologies are shaping cities.
Dubbed Intelligent Cities, the goal is to make technology and data more useful to urban planners, professionals in design and building, and the public, enhancing perception of the built environment that we live in. Emphasis will be placed on the interrelationship between information sets, described on www.nbm.org as the “connections between the size of our homes and the energy we consume as a nation, walkable neighborhoods and our health, and where we work and our infrastructure.” In line with this relational approach, the first advertisement for the project will explore the connection between home size, household residents and energy consumption, pointing out that while energy efficiency has increased over the last several decades, the benefits are offset by the combination of increased square footage and smaller families.
Intelligent Cities will begin with a six-month national public campaign through advertisements in TIME magazine and TIME.com. Public polling questions will be posted on www.nbm.org and via social media through March 2011, followed by research and consultation by the Museum and an advisory committee. A public forum will be held in June 2011, and the initiative will culminate with a publication scheduled for the fall of 2011 that will summarize the ideas and suggestions produced from the public outreach and forum.
The first poll questions, available now, inquire about choice of living location, asking for the top two reasons for choosing one’s current home or apartment, if those choices would be the same at this point in time, and if the priorities that led to the decision have changed, why? As www.nbm.org notes, the end result for these questions and the subsequent polls will help us “understand where we are, where we want to be, and how to get there.” National Building Museum president and executive director Chase W. Rynd provides this statement: “Through Intelligent Cities, we have the means to share their viewpoints with experts in the design and building industries so that there is a true give and take between constituencies. Experts need input from the community and can use it to make the planning and design process more open, participatory and democratic.”
The National Building Museum is a cultural institution dedicated to advancing the quality of the built environment by education through exhibitions, educational programs and print and online content. Intelligent Cities is a collaborative effort between the NBM, TIME, IBM and funded by the Rockefeller Foundation. To access the poll, and find more information on NBM, please visit their web site