Seven US cities have been selected for the final phase of Smart City Challenge sponsored by the Department of Transportation. The prize is 40 million dollars to implement smart technologies into their transport networks. The winning city will be announced in June.
"The magnate Paul Allen will contribute with other $ 10 million"
Anthony Foxx, Secretary of Transportation of the United States, has given the name of the seven finalists and specified that $ 40 million will serve the city chosen to become the first that fully integrates innovative automotive technologies, including driving cars, connected vehicles and intelligent sensors.
Austin, Columbus, Denver, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Portland and San Francisco will each have a chance to win funding, plus another $ 10 million by the company Vulcan Inc., owned by businessman magnate, investor and philanthropist Paul Allen, who will support the deployment of electric vehicles in the winning city, and other strategies to reduce carbon emissions.
“The level of interest in Smart City Challenge has been created throughout the country has far exceeded our expectation”, said Foxx. “After an overwhelming response from 78 cities, we decided to select seven finalists instead of five, because of their excellent potential to transform the future of urban transportation”.
Foxx also announced a new partnership with Smart City Challenge with Amazon Web Services (AWS), a services platform in the cloud, which will guide the finalists to help implement AWS services for intelligent solutions in the city, so as a prize of $ 1 million in loans for the winner. AWS will work with the department efforts to involve the community and bring their ideas to the finalists.
The seven finalists will receive a prize of $ 100,000 to further develop their proposals. In the end the winning city will be selected based on their ability to "think big" and give a detailed roadmap on how they will integrate innovative technologies to create a prototype of the future of transport in their city.
Other companies that have been involved in the project are Mobileye, which will installe its technology in buses’ winning city to avoid collisions with cyclists and pedestrians; Autodesk, which will provide access and training to the winning 3-D visualizations for large engineering projects, and NXP, which will provide to the winning city with wireless communication modules that enable data exchange for cars to avoid danger.