SCCANZ issues 5G city plan guidance

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 10 October, 2019

SCCANZ issues 5G city plan guidance

Smart Cities Council Australia New Zealand (SCCANZ) has issued new guidance outlining design principles for 5G networks in cities.

The paper outlines nine principles for local government organisations to follow to allow cities to make the most of the opportunities afforded by 5G.

“Right now, we have the opportunity to ensure 5G becomes a critical piece of our connected future and the digital economy that enhances opportunity and outcomes for all. But we need to be ‘all in’,” it states.

“We need to all commit to ensuring the deployment of 5G and urban infrastructure technology is coordinated and curated in a way that achieves the best outcomes for citizens, whilst ensuring that mutually reinforcing goals of all stakeholders are respected.”

Among the principles outlined in the paper is the need to define an agreed outcome for city streets that balances the cost of 5G deployment with achieving quality coverage in public parks and spaces.

Another consideration is balancing the need for high cell density to achieve the required coverage and capacity of 5G networks with visual aesthetics of city spaces, the paper states.

SCCANZ recommends that cities consider negotiating with other stakeholders to establish agreed maximum small cell densities per linear 100 m of space, develop an agreed approach to hiding 5G small cells and supporting infrastructure in plain sight, and ensure that deployment of 5G infrastructure be tree-friendly.

Another principle is that sharing should be the default for 5G telecommunications assets, with cities urged to facilitate co-location and co-masting of assets, as well as the co-use of underground trenches and other city infrastructure.

“We are entering a new phase in city shaping, with the scale of potential impact in our streets and public realm not experienced since the rollout of overhead power cables and electric lights,” SCCANZ said.

“Importantly, we know that cities are aware of the impending 5G deployment, but there is limited understanding of exactly what it will mean for cities and our streets. Many feel concerned that they are about to be overwhelmed by a mass rollout in a less than aesthetically pleasing way.”

Image credit: ©孤飞的鹤/Dollar Photo Club

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