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Dr. Rick Huijbregts joins Stantec as Global Smart Cities Lead

Dr. Rick Huijbregts joins Stantec as Global Smart Cities Lead

Strategic hire will lead firm’s initiative on digital transformation in the built environment

Leading global design firm Stantec has hired Dr. Rick Huijbregts to lead its global Smart Cities initiative. In this role, Dr. Huijbregts will grow, scale, and accelerate the firm’s smart city services by uniting innovative practitioners across multiple disciplines and business lines, including buildings, power, water, community development, and transportation. Stantec’s smart cities initiative will continue working at the leading edge of digital transformation, which is having a profound effect on the built environment and in solving the challenges facing communities.

“Smart Cities are about putting people first while using digital solutions to overcome complicated challenges in urban environments,” said Nancy MacDonald, vice president, Stantec’s Urban Places. “Rick has extensive experience that will help elevate the innovative work our team does. But he also sees the bigger picture – that we are not using technology for its own sake, but to solve problems and improve peoples’ lives.”

Dr. Huijbregts will lead a team of advisors collaborating with real estate developers, designers, engineers, IT professionals, and project managers to deliver projects that advance quality of life. Digital technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data analytics, the internet of things, and robotics are engaged and managed to support that effort. He will be based in the firm’s Toronto office.

“Digital technology is ready to help solve our urban challenges and create new opportunities and experiences by bringing together people, processes, places, data, connected things, and infrastructure,” said Dr. Huijbregts. “Stantec is particularly well suited to lead this movement and support its customers on their urban innovation and digitization journey.”

Prior to joining Stantec, Dr. Huijbregts was Vice-President Strategy & Innovation at George Brown College (GBC) in Toronto, responsible for strategic planning and partnerships. His mandate was to protect GBC’s agility and resilience in response to a rapidly changing and increasingly digital future. Prior to his time at GBC, Dr. Huijbregts spent over a decade at Cisco in various leadership roles, including Vice-President of Digital Transformation and Innovation, Head of Smart Cities and Buildings in Canada, and a member of Cisco’s global Smart Cities team.

​​Beyond his role at Stantec, Dr. Huijbregts maintains strong industry connections as a faculty member at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design Executive Education, Senior Scholar at George Brown College’s Center for Construction and Engineering Technologies, and as Executive in Residence at Ryerson for their Smart Cities Ventures Zone.

Stantec’s Smart Cities team has been central to numerous innovative projects and programs, including the Centennial NextGen Infrastructure Study, the City of Atlanta Smart Utility Program, the Denver Water Operations Complex Redevelopment, and the Automated Circulator and Connected Pedestrian Safety Program (GoMed) in Las Vegas.

Find out more about Smart Cities at Stantec.