Montréal, by and for its citizens

Already well known for its vibrant digital technology sector, Montréal has the potential to become a world-class model of the “smart city”, driven by its flourishing creativity and spirit of collaboration. More than ever before, Montréalers themselves are both the creators and principal beneficiaries of their quality of life and economic prosperity.

Montréalers are among the most digitally-savvy people on the planet, and this city is busting with creative types, innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and other multi-talented players.

Today, technology provides us with numerous opportunities to pool this wealth of talent. Through technology, citizens can make their desires known and can influence the decisions that affect them, creatives and innovators can propose more effective solutions, and entrepreneurs can launch ground-breaking new services which are in turn brought to a global market by astute investors. By becoming a smart city, Montréal is choosing to bring these talented individuals together, improving the quality of life for all in the process.

With its goals of making Montréal a global model for the smart city by 2017 and tapping in to this enormous potential, in spring 2014 the city established its Smart and Digital City Office. Its team has the mission of providing a framework for the kind of transformational projects that affect every aspect of life here, whether they involve government, infrastructure, public services or social issues.

In order for this transformation to reflect the real needs of Montréal’s citizens, the office has entered into a major dialogue with institutional and private sectors, municipal workers and the citizens themselves. By analyzing the over one million phone calls and 40,000 emails to the 311 information service logged in 2013, the responses of over 7,600 Montréalers over 4 surveys, consultations with over 400 participants as part of local co-design activities, and by rubbing elbows with people all over the island, the office has developed a clear understanding of what matters most to Montréalers.

Inspired by global best practices and stimulated by an ongoing exchange with Montréalers, the Smart and Digital City Office targets 5 main areas of activity: urban mobility, direct services to citizens, quality of life, the democratic process and economic development. These are the themes that from now until 2017 will become the foundation for the strategic development of Montréal, smart and digital city.