Rob Phocas, City of Charlotte

Rob Phocas

Director of Sustainability

City of Charlotte

You lead Smart Cities initiatives in Charlotte. What are some exciting projects you see coming up that support digital inclusion?

“We have a partnership with Duke Energy, Amazon, and Intel to bring technology into the home to lower bills. A second one is called ‘Tech Charlotte’ and the idea there is to work with school students in the area to develop better tech training programs. That’s still a longer term goal, but in the short term we heard back from residents is that they want is a place where they can go and have free internet access. So something we can do is an internet café or learning lab.

“We are actually working with Google Fiber and Hygge, which is a co-working space located in Camp North End, to open up a space in the new year. It will be free for residents where they will have free internet access and potentially free hardware for them.”

More information about Phocas’ work is available from the Office of the City Manager and CIO Review.