Edited by Marta Villar Ezcurra, Janet E. Milne, Hope Ashiabor and Mikael Skou Andersen
Chapter 4: Smart cities: can business improvement districts reduce the environmental footprint of urban areas?
Urban growth has brought about new challenges in terms of the economic efficiency and environmental sustainability that cities must face. Smart cities have responded to these challenges using technology, innovating in the way that public services are delivered to citizens and incorporating participatory governance as a new element in the equation. In this context, new forms of urban governance, such as business improvement districts (BIDs), allow for a closer collaboration between local governments and local agents in the development of initiatives that improve urban liveability. Through analysing best practices, this chapter explores the role of BIDs - public-private partnerships through which businesses invest collectively in the development of local improvements - in the delivery of smart, innovative solutions to reduce the environmental impact of commercial logistics in urban freight. Based on their potential benefits and their international success, the chapter also includes a legal proposal for the implementation of BIDs in Spain.
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