Former Microsoft executive and CEO of Living PlanIT Steve Lewis has brought Microsoft on-board to help with Portugal’s “smart city” in Paredes, according to the gurus at engadget. By incorporating networking technology directly into the city’s buildings and infrastructure, the “smart city” will significantly improve urban energy efficiency and overall sustainability. Several high-tech companies have already joined the fray, including Cisco, for the project that will eventually house 1/4 million people and cost a whopping $14.1 billion.

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Microsoft will provide the necessary cloud framework to coordinate the city’s integrated sensors with its Azure platform. These will allow real-time monitoring of everything from water and energy use to traffic management, improving the quality of life for residents while reducing the use of natural resources.

In addition to providing thousands of jobs in a country that is struggling financially, the increased efficiency will offset the initial investment the development, which Portugal called a project of “National Importance,” according to a Financial Times report. Let’s hope it doesn’t crash!

Via Engadget