In 2016, a group of Apeldoorn volunteers set up a public, freely accessible IoT network with the financial support of enthusiastic and engaged businesses. Today, this network has expanded to include eight gateways that together, as Apeldoorn’s IoT network, are part of the global The Things Network (TTN). The IoT network is used by citizens, interested parties and businesses alike. The council also uses it for projects where citizen participation and ‘citizen science’ play an important role.
The enthusiasm and speed with which the volunteers reacted have resulted in an IoT network that has been functioning reliably for over four years with an uptime of over 99%. Over the past four years, 45 million messages have been processed – that’s some 60,000 per day in Apeldoorn alone. The Apeldoorn region has one of the best IoT networks in Europe.
And this network’s public and free nature makes Apeldoorn unique. The IoT Apeldoorn foundation is dedicated to maintaining and expanding the IoT network, sharing knowledge, and learning and growing together. The foundation organizes many themed evenings to promote this. During these meetup meetings, interested people from near and far, including international participants, attend to expand and share their knowledge.
Smart City applications are some of the many uses discussed and developed during these meetup events.
Apeldoorn is unique with its open and freely accessible network. In recent years, the public has become increasingly wary of the government, and government research is not always taken on faith. Citizens are taking matters into their own hands and are conducting their own research on air quality, noise pollution, the impact of fireworks, and so forth. During meetup events, IoT solutions are developed that put citizen participation in the Smart City into practice.
For instance, residents are given access to measuring equipment that they can hang up in their own neighbourhood under guided instruction. They are also given login details so they can monitor the readings themselves. The range of applications has increased significantly. The foundation’s network monitors more than 2,600 unique sensors that are used to record data such as temperature, fine particulate matter and noise levels.
Thanks to the involvement of a large group of citizens (360!), the level of participation among residents in the city around the issues around which measurements are carried out is high. Citizens have access to the same information at the same time as the district does, making it transparent. This is also why many cities in the Netherlands and abroad gladly visit Apeldoorn to gain inspiration and follow Apeldoorn in this unique citizen participation project and exchange of (technical) knowledge.
Export countries: Belgium & Germany