Building on the recent successful conclusion of the Smart City Challenge (SCC), the City of Columbus has announced that it looks forward to it and Smart Columbus will become a collaborative innovation lab as it continues to develop new innovations for benefit its residents.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) created the SCC to evaluate a holistic approach to using new technologies to improve transportation performance and how this approach could be integrated with other smart city domains, including services. public health, safety and energy.
The government was really looking for that medium-sized city to accelerate the deployment of data-centric technology in transportation mobility. We really analyzed some of the challenges we had as a community and developed an app around that.
Smart Columbus program manager
During the five-year program, using the USD $ 50 million SCC awards and a foundation, along with $ 19 million shared between city, state and county costs, Columbus deployed a full portfolio of Mobility technologies that demonstrated safety and fair transportation options create opportunities for residents now and in the future.
Prior to the pandemic, approximately 85% of Columbus residents drove personal vehicles to where they were supposed to be, so some projects were connected to vehicle technology, designed to provide people with more information when driving.
They also looked at shared mobility and deployed Pivot, a travel planning app for people using the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) system that helped connect people with first / last mile options, such as scooters, rideshare and travel options. Pivot is also available at the kiosks of the city’s smart mobility centers.
Smart Columbus also launched autonomous and self-employed ferries in February 2020, but the outbreak of COVID altered plans because suddenly there was no need to move people. Columbus added about 2,300 direct and indirect jobs, were able to account for more than $ 700 million in aligned investment and has a tangible economic impact.
However, the situation also made Columbus more visible, as it is the smartest city in America and companies come here to do more business. The U.S. Department of Transportation has shared that they are now the number one autonomous vehicle testing center in the country. They can help residents invent cutting-edge technologies. They are being leaders in the transportation space, providing more jobs and opportunities.
The City of Columbus and the Columbus Partnership have announced that Smart Columbus will remain an agile, collaborative innovation lab that benefits the Columbus region by anticipating and advancing what is new and close to the intersection of technology and good. of the community.
When we implement technology in collaboration with the community, we can address some of our most pressing challenges. Smart Columbus will continue to explore how innovation in mobility, climate technologies, digitization, and other emerging technologies can help us address complex societal issues, respond to disruption, and generate economic opportunities.
Smart Columbus partners with the city and the Columbus Foundation in a methodology they are adopting in their innovation practice called Human Centered Design, which is aimed at residents to learn about what problems the community needs to address.
Equity and inclusion are an important part of human-centered design, such as making sure that experts in lived experience are at the table, shaping them, providing feedback, understanding basic issues, and having beware, so this is not just technology for the sake of technology and blind to all sensibilities. This allows us to move forward with the community.
Throughout SCC and beyond, Smart Columbus and its partners have put community involvement at the forefront of the development and implementation of new technologies, making them an example for cities across the country and the world. The city is one of 50 champion cities selected by prestigious philanthropies as part of the 2021 Global Mayors Challenge.