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How to make a city more liveable through design and technology? Smart City 2013－International Design Exhibition, the main exhibition at Beijing Design Week 2013, provides some suggestions. Sun Yuanqing checks it out.
As another smoggy day dawns, Beijing is seeking solutions in a new direction: design.
Evolving from the traditional role, design is now being applied in smart city development as a more accessible way to integrate and present urban information, service and management systems.
Smart City 2013－International Design Exhibition, the main exhibition at Beijing Design Week 2013, provides a preview of how innovative digital design will change modern cities for the better.
"We want to explore how design, coupled with technology, can improve urban living," says the curator Yang Lei, who is also a jury member of Digital Communities of Prix. "It is not only the authority's job to solve urban problems. More importantly is how we can use technology and design to improve our life as citizens."
The exhibition serves as a scheme for the National Smart City Innovation Centre at China Millennium Monument Museum of Digital Art in 2014, which aims to stimulate smart city development.
Smart city development has become the latest hype in China as the country rapidly urbanizes. It is estimated that 70 percent of the Chinese population will live in cities by 2050, which poses a critical challenge to the current city management system.
Beijing is not the only mega city seeking solutions for smog and traffic problems through digital design ideas. This year sees the booming of 202 smart pilot cities in China, supported by the government. And the blue print will come from Smart City 2013－International Design Exhibition.
The exhibition includes three sections, Smart City Public Platform, Smart Living and Smart City, covering areas such as urban planning, living and urban mobility. There are 58 works from 40 international design studios.