The new technology development center will focus on projects related to managing cities. By hosting the center, Santander will become the "urban laboratory" for its projects. The Center will also develop a training program and promote encounters between researchers, companies and entrepreneurs.
Ferrovial and the City of Santander
have reached an agreement to create a Research Center for Intelligent Cities. The Centers researchers may also work on projects implemented under the cooperation agreement between Ferrovial and Massachusetts Institute of Technology
(MIT). It will develop innovative projects, from seed to fruition, focused on various facets of city management: environment, infrastructure, mobility, energy management, and serving citizens and interacting with them. In this way, it will promote an Intelligent City model characterized by more efficient use of resources, real-time information management and establishment of indicators for service evaluation. Projects will be applicable in Spain and other countries. Santiago Olivares, CEO of Ferrovial Servicios: "This new center will set a benchmark in research into city management. Santander will be an ideas laboratory that will ensure efficiency, cost savings and higher quality in municipal services. Ferrovial currently manages the infrastructure for the city of Birmingham, in the UK, using an approach that has enhanced efficiency, innovation and service to citizens and which will also be applied in the city of Sheffield, where we were recently selected as Preferred Bidder." This new public-private initiative in the area of research and urban development will adopt an open innovation approach which enables it to join projects created by other companies (from multinationals to local SMEs), academic institutions, etc. in order to enhance the participants' capabilities. The Research Center for Intelligent Cities will also promote the creation of courses and Master's programmes and organize meetings with researchers, businesses and entrepreneurs to generate ideas and projects. The Center will be located in Santander, which currently chairs the Spanish Network of Intelligent Cities and which will become the "urban lab" for the Centers projects. Ferrovial is implementing an innovation strategy based on an open approach involving cooperation with public administrations, universities, technology centers and companies. Ferrovial has established a 5-year agreement with MIT to develop projects that enhance the energy efficiency of business processes.