DOT opens dataset on Smart City Challenge ideas

Source: GCN on January 9, 2017 | Matt Leonard

To share the lessons and innovations the Department of Transportation gleaned from the applicant cities to its Smart City Challenge, it has released a summary report and created an online dataset of submissions of the seven finalists that features the challenge addressed, proposed project category and project description.

The agency received submissions from 78 cities with ideas on improving ride sharing, planning for autonomous vehicles, increasing electric vehicle use and advancing data gathering, storage and analysis.

Many of the applicants’ projects tackled congestion. San Francisco’s strategy, for example, featured carpooling and included a designated carpool lane, an app to coordinate carpooling and sensors to monitor carpool lanes.

As overall traffic numbers are slated to increases on the nation’s roadways in the coming years, freight is predicted to increase as well -- 40 percent in the next 30 years, according to the report. Denver’s Smart City submission detailed how the city will make a freight corridor and to include “comprehensive freight parking and traffic information systems, freight signal prioritization, designated parking and staging areas,” the report said.

With more cargo and passenger vehicles on the roads, emissions will rise and air quality will decrease. That is why many cities’ proposals included ideas for bringing more electric vehicles into their government fleets and creating more charging infrastructure. Others planned to reduce overall energy use by converting stop lights to LEDs.

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