City of San Diego Member Spotlight

Smart City Open Urban Platform (SCOUP) Network

Infrastructure that incorporates energy-efficiency and management reaps both economic and environmental benefits. Data is continuously being collected, whether it be from phones and laptops, or building control dashboards and systems. Utilizing this data is a useful way to inform behavioral changes in energy-consumption patterns, and inform improvements necessary for existing and future infrastructure. The following LGSEC Member Spotlight highlights how interconnected data sources can create real change in energy-consumption behavior.


The City of San Diego is taking climate change seriously in their Climate Action Plan (CAP) with goals to reduce municipal building energy consumption by 15% by 2020 with an additional 25% by 2035, and switching to 100% renewable energy by 2035. One way that the City of San Diego is addressing municipal building energy usage is through the creation of the Smart City Open Urban Platform (SCOUP) network. This open platform is an automated energy tracking system containing energy data which should be used to make energy-related decisions to increase energy efficiency and control in municipal buildings across the City of San Diego.

Figure 1: San Diego Smart City Open Urban Platform Vision

The City of San Diego will make the information available between 700 municipal buildings so that building control systems can be aggregated and therefore more connected and efficient. The advanced system will automatically highlights areas of improvement where energy use and greenhouse gases could be reduced in order to meet the City of San Diego’s immediate CAP goals for 2020.

A major area of concentration is the downtown City Administration Building (CAB) Complex- a 720,000 square-foot area containing the City Administration Building, CIty Operations Buildings, Plaza Hall, Civic Theatre, City Concourse Building, and Central Plant, that has the potential to cut 13% of energy consumption. The City of San Diego is planning on achieving this goal through the installation of 400 wireless pneumatic retrofit thermostats. Additionally, they plan to reduce another 15% through integrating HVAC and lighting control systems into the SCOUP Smart Energy Management & Monitoring System (SEMMS).

Figure 2: SEMMS Action Cycle


The SCOUP team is finalizing contractual agreements with all necessary parties in order to begin using the data and start the installation of controls for the goals of the project. Reviews for the CAB Complex portfolio have already begun and will provide a great update to the database after doing so. All this information will also be included in the Municipal Energy Strategy and Implementation plans.

Figure 3.  Sample City Energy Dashboard  Figure 4. Sample Individual Facility Energy Dashboard


Funding for the SCOUP network has been provided by a $1.9 million grant from the California Energy Commission’s Energy Innovation Challenge (EIC).

Future of the Program:

A key aspect of SCOUP is education and outreach within and outside the City of San Diego. Stakeholder outreach through webinars, podcasts, in person events, and conferences will help the City of San Diego tset an example for other municipalities that are addressing the effects of climate change. SCOUP is hoping to serve as a replicable model for other government entities to adopt. With the information recovered from the data, the City of San Diego wants to use this project as a pilot to test smart building management systems to eventually cover as many municipal facilities as possible so that the City of San Diego can meet its goals outlined in the CAP as well as be a role model in the community and the region.

Program Partners:

The City of San Diego works with: Shadpour Consulting Engineer, Inc., Dynalectric Company,  Cypress Envirosystems, Inc., and the Local Government Commission.