Metro Vancouver may soon see a new kind of utility pole appearing around the City. Offering a one stop shop of all things utility, V-Pole would provide wi-fi and mobile wireless opportunities, LED street lighting, electric vehicle charging, parking transactions and act as a neighborhood bulletin board. Simplifying current utility pole technology, the V-Pole will reduce visual clutter while offering an energy efficient and cost effective solution.
“The wireless data game has changed,” said V-Pole creator David Coupland. “Data transmission is no longer something scary you don’t want in your back yard. Now you want it directly in front of your house.”
Developed by Vancouver-native Douglas Coupland, the idea was fostered through investigation of open source wireless opportunities. As Coupland was researching at Bell Labs in New Jersey in an effort to write a book upon the subject, he discovered lightRadio— a small Rubik’s cube size reduced-wattage device eliminates the need for large boxes filled with wires and switching equipment.
“It’s a remarkable coincidence that just as I was looking for an enabling technology, the lightRadio™ dropped in my lap,” said Coupland.
The City of Vancouver, alongside Coupland, debuted the concept at the New Cities Summit in Paris last week. Proving the City supports the idea of providing an open source technological solution, the City of Vancouver has emphasized itself as an innovative and technological city.
“The City of Vancouver is signaling its belief that the future is about smart, open-source technology,” said Coupland. “This is an inevitable technology and a massive entrepreneurial opportunity. Urbanites want what the V‑Pole provides. Now is the time for partnerships and alliances to begin.”
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Coupland has confidence in his concept, expecting the future to hold a promising venture opportunity for V-Pole. Coupland sees current technology with its huge mainframe systems to will soon be a thing of the past.
“In three years there will be thirty times more wireless data traffic than there is now,” said Coupland “Unless we act quickly, our streets could be as cluttered as a kitchen junk drawer. No one wants that.”
“Enabling new generation communications, data and zero emission transportation is a key goal for Vancouver,” added Robertson. “An idea like the V-Pole will drive the pace of innovation and spark creative partnerships between cities and utilities. Integrating smart technologies in street poles can make cities more efficient while delivering better services to citizens.