Tag Archives: Smart City Challenge

What I learned in Amsterdam


getting onto an electric bike in AmsterdamBy Steve Adler

Our innovation exchange trip with Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx just took us through Amsterdam where we met with Dutch Mayors, non-profits (NGOs), and companies all in pursuit of the “Smart City” vision. What Diane Land, my wife, Rob Spillar, the director of our city’s transportation department, have seen is interesting and has potentially interesting applications to our mobility challenges in Austin.

First off, a Smart City is a city in which data is captured from all aspects of urban life and then that data is employed to improve its residents’ quality of life. This could take a thousand different forms, such as traffic lights that monitor traffic levels and patterns, time of day, weather, events in the area, and then which adjust synching and timing to minimize traffic delay. In other words, the kind of thing we’re working on with the Smart City Challenge.

And of course I need to explain this picture, but more on that below. Continue reading

Racing to the finish line in the Smart City Challenge

April 18, 2016
By Mayor Steve Adler

At first glance, a federal grant about technological innovations for mobility might not have much to do with racial equality in Austin, Texas. After all, Austin is one of seven finalists for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge, a $50-million competition to use technology to make mobility safer, cheaper, cleaner, and more effective for everyone – not just some. But as much as winning the Smart City Challenge would help Austin with mobility, it would also have a transformative impact on entire communities in my city that have never equally shared in our prosperity. Continue reading

#DOTSmartCity update for April 5

Ce-oRgkUMAAS4I-With Mayor Adler and Austin transportation officials in DC today in connection with the city’s bid as a finalist for the DOT’s Smart City Challenge, we wanted you to get a quick rundown on the latest coverage of this topic.

“What the Smart City Challenge Means for Austin now and Long-Term”
by Matt Glazer, executive director of the Austin Young Chamber of Commerce

When fully implemented, these technological advancements would provide greater opportunities that are now limited by access to having a working car—not to mention the time to navigate our clogged roads. But here’s the best part, and I was pretty excited to hear this myself: Austin is already doing all these things.

In some form, every one of those transportation transformations is already underway in Austin. The City of Austin just partnered with the University of Texas at Austin on a big data project. Google is testing driverless cars in our neighborhoods, and General Motors and Lyft are exploring driverless ridesharing. And the City’s transportation department has been working towards linking all mobility options to Park & Ride centers.

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