Life saving hubs with defibrillators and phone charging points could come to Leicester in £2.5m plan

The kiosks would record air pollution and pedestrian numbers too

London-based firm Pulse Smart Hub says it wants to spend £2.5 million putting a series of units up in city streets.

The company wants planning permission for 24 of the 2.5 metre high structures.

They would offer free public WiFi, a public phone, emergency buttons to call 999 and access to maps and local information on touch screens.

Other proposed features include sensors that capture data on air quality, traffic flow, and pedestrian numbers which could be used by Leicester City Council.

A defibrillator would be available to help people who suffer a cardiac arrest and Pulse Smart Hub will pay for residents and workers close to the hubs to have training sessions to use them – though the firm says they could be used by anyone.

Planning applications for the 24 smart hubs will be considered by the council this month and if they are improved the first hub will be installed in the spring.

The devices have already been installed in Belfast and if the Leicester scheme is approved, the intelligent kiosks would be the first of their kind on a high street in England.

The maintenance of the “smart street furniture” would be funded via digital advertising, which would be displayed on the hubs at no cost to the public purse.

Pulse Smart Hub chief executive officer Patrick Fisher said: “We have been working to ensure the Pulse Smart Hub network supports Leicester City Council’s strategic vision for smart cities and that the benefits to the city and its residents are truly maximized and available free to all.”

“In the age of the Smart City, street furniture must do more to earn its place on the High Street.

“At no cost to the public or taxpayer, the Pulse Smart Hub is the smartest of smart furniture.”

Hubs are proposed at various locations including Jubilee Square, the Highcross shopping centre, High Street, Gallowtree Gate, Humberstone Gate and the railway station.

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