Smart City

New Smart Cities on the Rise in Florida and Colorado

Date: Sept. 1, 2016

“How Florida and Colorado Are Trying to Build Smart Cities from the Ground Up,” an article that Matthew Wheeland wrote for The Guardian on August 9, offers some tantalizing insights into microgrid- enhanced smart cities that are being built in Florida and Colorado.

Wheeland reports on what is going on . . .

Babcock Ranch, Florida

Babcock Ranch, located just outside Fort Myers, is a housing complex that will start to sell its first homes early next year.  The goal is to build America’s first “solar city” – a community, largely solar-powered, that will be home to 50,000 residents.

Kitson & Partners, the developer, is partnering with IBM to develop an innovative, solar-powered infrastructure with the integration of microgrids. During daylight hours, electrical power will be supplied by a 75-megawatt solar farm that is being installed by Florida Power & Light. At night, backup power will be supplied by a natural gas power plant.

Among the more utopian aspects of the planned community will be gigabit-speed internet connectivity for all residents and a fleet of electric, solar-refueled vehicles for residents to use.

More information is available at

Peña Station Next, Colorado

Peña Station Next, situated on 400 acres near Denver International Airport, is a new “Visionary Transit Oriented Development” that Denver is developing with the help of Panasonic and developer L. C. Fulenwider. In part, it will be modeled after a 45-acre smart town, Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town, that Panasonic has developed in Japan over the last 10 years.

The new development will be home to office parks, stores, public plazas, and residences. It is being called a “transit oriented development” because it will be located on the last stop of the new light-rail line that connects Denver to the airport. At that final stop, travelers will be able to park their cars in an 800-spot parking garage that will also be the home of a 1.3-megawatt solar array.

More information on Peña Station Next is available at

Innovative New Projects Lie Ahead . . .

Please bookmark this blog and return often for news of new communities and projects that make extensive use of microgrid technology.

For more information on the convergence of smart cities, autonomous vehicles and microgrids, check out our two co-located events:

Microgrid Convergence – 10/25 to 10/26 – San Francisco, CA

Driverless Cities – 10/26 to 10/28 – San Francisco, CA