BRADFORD could see a ten per cent drop in the costs of public services if a groundbreaking new international project proves a success.

The city is the only one in England that will be trialling new smart technologies to help save millions, and vastly improve services like bin collections and public car parks.

A group of researchers from the University of Bradford are working alongside the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands and Aarhus University in Denmark to use the latest technology to revolutionise city life.

The work could see Bradford introduce interactive dustbins that can sense when they are full, intelligent car parks that can highlight empty spaces and real-time flood-warning information data that could save lives.

These technologies - collectively known as the Internet of Things - are designed to improve the delivery of public services.

The five-year “Smart Cities and Open Data Re-use” (SCORE) project will see the ideas trialled and possibly implemented in Bradford as well as European cities Aarhus, Amsterdam, Aberdeen in Scotland, Bergen, Dordrecht, Ghent, Gothenberg and Hamburg.

All the cities taking part are targeting a ten per cent reduction in the cost of service provisions and a 20 per cent improvement in the quality of these services - measured by public perception. It is hoped that these cities could save up to €50m (£46m) by 2021.

Dr Dhaval Thakker, lecturer in computing and SCORE project principal investigator at the University, said: “The aim is to improve the delivery of public services, using innovative software and data sharing. Our role is to use our expertise in creating solutions, to assist cities in developing more efficient ways of delivering essential services.

“We’re coming up with a variety of solutions to improve what is currently being offered.

“Our particular role will be making sure all the data is shared, and all the data we produce is open and clear. We already specialise in big data technologies.

“All these cities are very different, and have very different infrastructures. Everyone will be able to learn from each other in this project. It will be very significant for Bradford to have that visibility. It is a very good thing for the city to be involved in. It will also be great for the university.”

The project, funded through the European Regional Development Fund, is being backed by Bradford Council, responsible for many of the services the partnership hopes to revolutionise.

Dr Thakker said: “Bradford Council is a huge supporter of the work we do, and we have worked closely together for a number of years. It’s exciting to know the work that we will do with some of the biggest cities across Europe will benefit the people of Bradford.”

Council Leader Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe said: “Bradford Council is delighted to be a major player in this exciting project with our partners at the university and in Europe. Everyone knows that councils are being challenged to deliver more for less so our participation in the SCORE project is important to us.”