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Fri November 27 2020

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Bentley and Microsoft share ‘digital twin’ technology

21 Oct Bentley Systems and Microsoft are to work together to accelerate the development of ‘digital twin’ technology for the infrastructure sector.

The initiative is aimed at enabling engineers, architects, contractors and city planners to work within a comprehensive city-scale digital model.

It will expand an existing strategic alliance focused on smart construction and urban planning for smart cities. The alliance will combine Microsoft’s Azure IoT Digital Twins and Azure Maps with Bentley Systems’ iTwins platform.

The companies will explore opportunities for digital twins in urban planning and citizen engagement for cities around the world.

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“At Bentley we believe that infrastructure digital twins can empower engineers, constructors and owner-operators to design, build and operate infrastructure assets that are more cost-effective, more resilient and more sustainable,” said Bentley Systems CEO Greg Bentley. “With Azure as the foundation of our cloud services, our offerings are more broadly scaled and differentiated by the further integrations of Microsoft technologies. We are excited to extend our partnership to bring new digital twin advances to infrastructure engineering organisations and their constituents.”

“With Azure IoT, Azure Digital Twins and Bentley’s iTwins platform, the world’s infrastructure - vital to our economies and environment — stands to gain so much by enabling people to create comprehensive digital models of an entire environment,” said Casey McGee, vice president partner development at Microsoft. “Our expanded strategic alliance with Bentley Systems opens up new opportunities for innovation and will accelerate the benefits of digital twins for infrastructure engineering organizations and, more broadly, society at large.”

The city of Dublin has been working with Bentley Systems to develop an extensive digital twin as part of the city’s planning efforts. “To overcome the challenges of getting public review and comment for new development projects in Dublin during the pandemic, we turned to Microsoft and Bentley to create an interactive virtual environment to ensure our citizens could provide their input from the safety of their homes and keep the development projects on track,” said Jamie Cudden, smart city programme manager at Dublin City Council. “The impact of the pandemic has forced cities like Dublin to accelerate their digital transformation journeys. Working with Microsoft and Bentley we are reimagining how interactive virtual environments and digital twins can support citizens to engage from the safety of their own home on new development projects in their local communities. Working with these technology partners, we are building an adaptable and scalable solution based on Microsoft Teams and Bentley’s OpenCities Planner that will set the standard for the future of planning and public engagement in cities.” 

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