Bestmile, Corporate Partner in the DOT’s Smart City Challenge
July 22, 2016 | News
As a corporate partner in the DOT’s Smart City Challenge, Bestmile extends its support to Columbus and offers its services to partner with the city to help successfully achieve its vision of a healthy, prosperous and innovative city that meets the needs of its citizens.
The organization of the Smart City Challenge recognized Bestmile as a corporate partner, as its solution is aligned with the challenge’s goals, and is interested in having the company actively work with Columbus, Ohio, the winning city, in addition to the finalist cities of Austin, Denver, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Portland and San Francisco. Bestmile was highly impressed by the quality of the finalists’ applications, their deep understanding of the challenges posed by urban mobility and dedication to solve them.
Part of Columbus’ plan is to pilot self-driving vehicles in a specified area of the city, which falls into Bestmile’s field of expertise. Bestmile looks forward to the opportunity to collaborate with the city of Columbus in the framework of piloting its software in partnership with electric autonomous vehicles and other technology providers, and trial viable use cases of advancing shared, connected automated mobility. In the long run, and at the scale required to support thousands of autonomous vehicles, there is a need for a global fleet management solution to optimize traffic, network between fleets, and reduce the overall ecological footprint in cities. It would then offer an innovative and complete mobility solution that addresses cities’ development needs in an efficient and sustainable way.
In its application to the Smart City Challenge, Columbus demonstrated its alignment with the challenge’s vision elements, including five main strategies and proposed projects to deploy: Smart Corridor to Provide Access to Jobs; Real-time and Integrated Data for Smart Logistics; Connected Visitors; Connected Cities; and Sustainable Transportation Options. Bestmile is poised to offer a solution that would advance these strategies – in particular those relating to the smart corridor and sustainable transportation options – as it addresses the highest priority vision elements of urban automotion, connected vehicles, in addition to others that comprise a Smart City. As a technology company, Bestmile’s premise is that the future of mobility isn’t in autonomous vehicles themselves, but in what they can offer when they’re operated and managed collectively in an integrated ecosystem, and the subsequent benefits offered to the public.
The Smart City Challenge — a partnership between the U.S. Department of Transportation and Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc. — aims to catalyze innovation by cities across the country to demonstrate “what’s possible” through scalable solutions to fully integrate innovative technologies – including self-driving cars, connected vehicles, and smart sensors – into their transportation network.
Cities and transportation are major contributors to climate change — transportation alone is responsible for 26% of U.S. carbon emissions. By changing how cities transport people and goods, we have the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and tackle climate change — one of the most urgent challenges facing the world.
The Smart City Challenge leverages data, technology and innovative ideas to spur large-scale change. The U.S. DOT will award the winning city of Columbus up to $40 million to bring its vision to life, and Vulcan Inc. will contribute up to $10 million in funding and support.