Wianxiang, prominent Chinese car manufacturer, has partnered with PlatON, a blockchain privacy startup, to develop the underlying infrastructure for China’s largest smart city project, slated for completion by 2025.
His eponymous Wanxiang Innova City, in progress since 2015, will convert 8.3 square kilometers premium riverfront real-estate in Hangzhou into an “expansive digital and ecological urban space,” according to a press release.
PlatON blockchain tech will be deployed to “track, transfer, and secure critical data such as resident identification cards and smart devices.”
In addition to the $29 billion Wanxiang has already pledged to invest over the decade-long development, it will also incorporate its intellectual property to research renewable energies and build manufacturing facilities for electric vehicles.
To this end, PlatON’s blockchain will also be used to monitor driving behavior to train auto-driving systems and monitor the electric vehicle life cycles, according to Vincent Wang, Chief Innovation Officer at Wanxiang Holdings. Granular data including battery life will be collected to better manage ecological waste.
“Imagine a smart transit system that tracks and rewards responsible driving behavior, or a renewable power grid that incentivizes energy generation and trading, or even a myriad of urban services that can be validated, built, and offered at ease without the constraints of rigid data silos,” said Wang.
The full view of PlatON’s computing network includes tracking corporations and individuals’ use of public infrastructure in Wanxiang Smart City, to enable seamless transactions and transparent use of services.
PlatON CSO Ada Xiao said the blockchain “can ensure the privacy of sensitive data including digital identities of residents, smart equipment, and personal devices, as they interact with one another on a shared ledger.”
Some 90,000 people in total are expected to move in by 2025.
The Wanxiang Blockchain Lab was established as the first not-for-profit organization in China dedicated to blockchain research and development. The smart city will also feature an International Research and Innovation Park. China has been using high-tech tools to track citizens in real time, including millions of Muslims.