Living Lab

Living Lab

DBP partners with tech groups to solve operational and quality of life challenges facing cities. Using DBP-operated public spaces as testing grounds for their smart city technologies, participating groups and startups will share their data and findings with DBP for future planning purposes.

  • Explore the Pilots

    Meet the groups that are launching pilots studies in Downtown Brooklyn.


    DOT Studio, a research and development partnership with NYCEDC and Newlab, developed a six-month public e-bike charging pilot program as part of NYC’s Green Economy Action Plan, a first-of-its-kind plan that outlines a roadmap to grow the city’s green economy. Swiftmile provided charging infrastructure located on Willoughby Street between Pearl and Jay Streets.


    Cornell Tech Trashbots

    Cornell Tech, in partnership with Downtown Brooklyn Partnership have been deploying “trashbots” – remote controlled trash cans – as part of a larger study to understand the ways in which people respond to service robots operating in public spaces. The Cornell Tech research team will use this study to help further inform the future of human-computer interaction (HCI).



    The three groups that are piloting studies work across a variety of fields in urban planning, including noise pollution monitoring, digital mapping, and public data analysis. Their findings will be valuable to public space operators such as DBP – which manages three Business Improvement Districts across Downtown Brooklyn – enabling efficient management and strategic programming of the public realm.



    Aclima will measure air quality throughout Downtown Brooklyn using hybrid vehicles outfitted with air and particulate sensors. Over the course of three months, Aclima hopes to establish a baseline of air quality with the goal of providing this data to community group and governments. Aclima is a participant in Newlab’s Circular City Studio, which enables companies to pilot transformative technology throughout New York City, including in Downtown Brooklyn, to solve pressing challenges.



    Walkspan is a data-driven and location intelligence technology firm dedicated to finding solutions to enhance the experience of walking. Sidewalk conditions are analyzed through a series of “walkability constructs” including access, amenities, comfort, interest, legibility, safety, social equity, and vibrancy. Walkspan’s findings and recommendations from the study area around several transit hubs in Downtown Brooklyn will be used to support DBP’s planning and operations.



    Citiesense assembles map-based features to help community organizations like BIDs advance the neighborhood improvement process, by designing a knowledge management platform to store local real estate information and information about street conditions, as well as offering location data analysis, and tracking change over time.

    Citiesense will digitize the Downtown Brooklyn Real Estate Development Matrix. Citiesense will digitize DBP’s real estate development pipeline. The platform will link properties to relevant city data, including assessed values from the Department of Finance and construction permit information from the Department of Buildings.

    DBP is also working with Citiesense to create a platform that allows for images to be added to our inventory of office and retail space, and will map, warehouse, and analyze streetscape assets to expedite repairs and upgrades.




    Qucit is using AI to sort through hundreds of data sets, such as weather data, open street maps, calendars and any sensors available, and produce results that help cities better understand their public spaces. This information helps urban service providers, private operators and public institutions to improve their quality of service and make the most of their public spaces.

    Qucit is working to help Downtown Brooklyn to understand its public spaces from a number of different angles through public data analysis and on-the-ground surveys.


    Sounds of New York City

    Sounds of New York City (SONYC) is an NYU research initiative focused on developing an acoustic sensor network for the monitoring, analysis and mitigation of urban noise pollution.

    Noise pollution is one of the most pernicious quality of life issues, yet most cities lack the resources for continuously monitoring noise and understanding the contribution of individual sources, the tools to analyze patterns of noise pollution at city-scale, and the means to empower city agencies to take effective, data-driven action for noise mitigation.

    SONYC is deploying sensors to monitor noise along the Fulton Mall. This data will help inform long-term planning for the busy corridor and assist DBP’s operations team in reporting noise pollution issues to the city.


    Numina measures what, where, when, and how things move in streets and open space.

    In partnership with New Lab City, DBP is working with Numina to understand the volume and path of pedestrians, bicycles, and vehicles along the Fulton Mall. Through the pilot, Numina is also testing its ability to provide insight on trash-related issues and streetscape fixture usage. DBP plans to leverage the data to advocate for safer streets and more informed deployment of resources to improve the quality of life in the district.


Get involved with Living Lab

Are you interested in launching a pilot with Living Lab? Apply now and we’ll be in touch.


Subscribe to our newsletters