INFRASTRUCTURE OF THE FUTURE As cities adopt smart infrastructure, it’s becoming a growing opportunity for local tech firms.

It was in the early 2000s when Jim Misener, chair of the SAE C-V2X Technical Committee, first started to watch short-range communication come into form and the emerging ability for cars to “talk” to surrounding infrastructure. “Smart cities” had not yet become a common term.

Misener said the technology peaked SAE International’s interest, and the organization, which develops global standards, quickly set to work creating a set of standards to shape the way cities deploy smart infrastructure.

Since then, companies developing smart infrastructure have popped up across the nation and in Pittsburgh in what has become an emerging industry as cities look to upgrade and transform their aging infrastructures.

Now, this growing sector may get an additional boost with President Joe Biden’s proposed $2 trillion infrastructure plan.

Karen Lightman, executive director of Metro21: Smart Cities Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, praised the Biden administration’s recently proposed American Jobs Act for its dedication to expanding broadband coverage.