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Cheshire East plans for green tech in digital strategy

22/03/22
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Image source: istock.Com/Simpson33

Cheshire East Council has pointed to plans to use smart places technology to further its green ambitions as part of its newly published digital strategy.

The document also includes plan for modernising services, building a local digital infrastructure, supporting the local economy and using technology to support health and wellbeing.

Set to run until 2024, the strategy includes a series of actions to develop digital tech in supporting the green agenda.

These include using real time data to promote the use of public transport, maximising the use of artificial intelligence to proactively monitor the condition of roads, payments and highway assets, and to support the delivery of services such as waste collection.

The council will also encourage developers to integrate smart technology into new buildings and with distribution network operators to provide smart grid services to manage power usage and generation, and to use technologies such as vehicle-to-grid charging.

Infrastructure intentions

This is part of a broader plan to develop digital infrastructure, which includes pressing on with the Connecting Cheshire programme to roll out gigabit-capable full fibre broadband to rural areas, to identify areas with poor connecting and work with planning policies to support the provision of 5G.

Other elements of the strategy include plans that are common to local government ambitions, such as implementing technology to hold data centrally while providing a robust framework for the use of people’s data and ensuring access to data sharing frameworks.

This comes with a plan to redesign the corporate website, improve the management of customer contact and with local people to redesign services.

Measures to support the local economy include providing businesses with an online account for all council services, setting a portal for business access to support, providing ‘master classes’ for business in maximising the benefits of connectivity, and continuing the Adapt Project with Barclays on promoting digital accounting and payment. These are accompanied by plans to set up digital innovation hubs, seek funding for business clustering programmes for fintech and creative industries, and to develop 5G pilot projects.

On the health and care side, Cheshire East is planning to deliver a local integrated patient record, explore the use of telemedicine and assistive technology, and continue to develop the Live Well portal as a directory to information and advice.

The council is also developing a digital skills training programme for its staff, and intends to develop more detailed plans for different elements of the strategy. It will report on progress on a six-monthly basis.

More to do

Cllr Sam Corcoran, leader of the council, said: “We have already made strong progress with our digital journey. The pandemic has driven change at a pace not seen before and we have all had to adapt to changes in our daily working practices and in our communities.

"However, we know that there is more to be done, and that as digital technologies continue to change at pace, we must be flexible to adapt to the new opportunities that this presents.

“We must also ensure that no-one is left behind and that we continue to support those who are unable to, or choose not to use digital.

“I look forward to seeing how this strategy can help to provide a clear vision for our digital transformation, against which the existing wide range of activities can be co-ordinated and future initiatives can be assessed.”

 

 

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