Transportation for America and Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs have formed the T4A Smart Cities Collaborative, composed of 16 cities, to share best practices in connected streets technology. The cities will receive policy and technical assistance and support in piloting new programs that improve urban mobility.
Austin, Texas, Denver, Colo., Boston, Mass., Centennial, Colo., Chattanooga, Tenn., Lone Tree, Colo., Los Angeles, Calif., Miami-Dade County, Fla., Madison, Wisc., Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., Nashville, Tenn., Portland, Ore., Sacramento, Calif., San Jose, Calif., Seattle, Wash., and Washington, D.C. will explore transportation data analytics, automated vehicles and shared mobility opportunities.
Cities understand that they need to work together, but the question has always been how best to band these municipalities in partnership. This collaborative will be an unprecedented step in unifying these urban areas and accelerate solutions that provide affordable, efficient ways to get around,” said Rohit T. Aggarwala, Sidewalk Labs chief policy officer in a joint statement with T4A.
Sidewalk Labs, a Google offshoot, has also partnered with the U.S. Department of Transportation in the 2016 Smart City Challenge and will be working with Columbus, Ohio–the winner–providing a host of support and 100 FLOW Wi-Fi kiosks that “wire” city streets with digital access and more. The T4A Smart Cities will likely get similar connected streets support, such as parking insights and a parking app, according to Digital Trends. The kiosks, which use sensors and data analytics that connect with nearby devices like smartphones, are already in operation in New York City. The capital costs of the FLOW Wi-Fi kiosks system are offset by cities, along with advertising.
The T4A Smart Cities will begin meeting via a series of workshops to discuss strategies and solutions that modernize their cities’ infrastructure. Their goals with connected streets projects spawned by the new collaborative are to address parking and traffic enforcement, reduce collisions and increase transportation access to the underserved.