INTERGEO 2015: Stuttgart Moves Toward Smart City

September 3, 2015  - By
Photo courtesy: Alen Ajan /

Photo courtesy: Alen Ajan /

This year’s Intergeo host city, Stuttgart, offers interactive city maps packed with geoinformation in an effort to become a “smart city.” Founded in 2001, Working Group Geoinformation Systems of Stuttgart (GIS AG) has evaluated environmental and traffic issues, sustainable urban development and solutions for a climate-friendly energy supply. Intergeo 2015 is being held Sept. 15–17.

Stuttgart is growing, according to a news release from Intergeo, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future as newcomers flock to the region’s urban capital city. The number of inhabitants in the region has increased from 2.4 million in 1990 to 2.7 million today, Intergeo officials said.

Stuttgart authorities have forged action plans addressing mobility, energy and a sustainable living environment, “and we lay the foundation for each of these spheres,” said Markus Müller, head of the geoinformation and cartography department at the City Surveyor’s Office.

Müller wants to see Stuttgart’s immense GIS data put to the widest possible use, according to the news release. He believes that the move towards the “intelligent city,” also known as a “smart city” or “city of tomorrow,” is only a matter of time.

Intelligently Networked

Stuttgart’s geoinformation and cartography department is frequently called upon — whether it’s for a simulation of the different planning options for a new city headquarters in the heart of the city, long-term monitoring of the building works related to the Stuttgart 21 infrastructure project, implementing traffic concepts in the congested regional capital or planning affordable living.

Stuttgart Aims for Dynamic, Interactive Maps

Müller and his team are on a mission to bring geoinformation into wider circulation and further optimize the local authorities’ workflows. They plan for a perfectly tailored geographic information system (GIS) for professional administrators, as a public information tool and as an increasingly important preparatory aid for political decision-making.

GIS-AG was founded in Stuttgart in 2001 to accomplish that task, and it now encompasses 15 specialist departments and municipal enterprises, according to Intergeo. Visit Stuttgart’s city website [click here for English] to find geoinformation — the city map alone covers about 70 subject areas, such as nature and the environment, leisure and culture, mobility and traffic, and planning and construction.

“The city map scores a lot of hits, probably also due to its accessibility on all platforms,” Müller said. The city map is just one piece of the puzzle in the ‘Stuttgart Maps’ project, which is aimed at making geographical information increasingly accessible to the public. The idea is to offer more and more data and to construct dynamic, interactive maps from the city plans in order to make the city truly intelligent.


Photo courtesy: Alen Ajan /


Sensor and Real-Time Data

“The automatic capture of sensor data and the visualization of real-time data will continue to increase as intelligent cities develop,” Müller said.

In relation to energy, this could mean interactive evaluation and visualization of the potential uses for waste-water heating, or dynamic representations of the city’s energy consumption or heating requirements. Traffic flow could be visualized and the spread of emissions depicted.

“Once the foundation has been laid, ways can be found to optimize these systems and manage their success,” Müller said.

Stuttgart3D Photo courtesy: Alen Ajan /

Photo courtesy: Alen Ajan /

Smart City Hamburg?

Intergeo’s host city for 2016, Hamburg, is already seeking intelligent concepts for the cities of tomorrow — just like those already in use in Berlin, the host city for Intergeo 2017.

GIS AG will be at Intergeo, stand C8.025 in Hall 8, with 10 departments and municipal enterprises from Stuttgart’s public authorities showcasing innovative applications and solutions using GIS.

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About the Author: Joelle Harms

Joelle Harms is the digital media manager for GPS World. Harms completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and creative writing specialization from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. She specifically creates content for GPS World and Geospatial Solutions digital properties including newsletters, videos, social media and websites.

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