Smart Cities Challenge Finalists – In November of 2017, the Government of Canada challenged communities across the country to develop ‘bold and ambitious ideas to improve the lives of their residents using data and connected technology’. Over 200 communities, large and small, from across Canada submitted their innovative ideas to the ‘Smart Cities Challenge’.
From there, an independent panel of 13 jury members evaluated the submissions – and the cities of Montreal and Cote Saint Luc have been named as two of the 20 finalists selected to go on to the next step of the Challenge. They will each receive a $250,000 grant to help develop their final proposals. The winners will be announced in the spring of 2019 – with Montreal in the category standing to win $50 million and Cote St. Luc in the category standing to win $20 million.
Montreal chose to submit their project on the Focus Areas of ‘Mobility’ and ‘Environmental Quality’. In their submission statement they write:
‘The Montreal community is shaping an efficient and dynamic neighbourhood life by innovating mobility and access to food. Through a co-creation and citizen participation process, the accessibility of services and the well-being of Montrealers are increasing significantly.
The City of Montreal and 36 project owners and partners are committed to take action on systemic issues of urban life, including mobility and access to food so that all Montrealers may enjoy a pleasant quality of life where their basic needs are met. Technology will allow us offer Montrealers efficient and sustainable transportation alternatives, thus reducing automobile usage. As a result, neighbourhoods will become more enjoyable places, conducive to a rich and local way of life.
An improved public transportation offering, associated with new and innovative forms of mobility (car sharing on-demand, autonomous vehicles, bike sharing, etc.) will reinforce the access to local services, most notably to food supply.
As a complement to the technological dimension, transversal projects in governance and citizen engagement will ensure the responsible deployment of technologies, given that they will be derived from collective decision-making, thus preventing abuse in terms of data collection and usage. The combination of a participative and technological approach framed by innovative and agile governance will not only concretely improve the lives of Montrealers, but will bring about profound, sustainable change which may be applied to other contexts’.
“A smart city is a city that provides a better quality of life for all. By working on issues related to local services, we offer a richer and more inclusive neighbourhood life to Montrealers,” said François William Croteau, Rosemont-La Petite-Patrie borough Mayor and City Councillor, in a press release.
‘Healthy Living and Recreation’. In their submission statement they write:
‘Our city will provide socially isolated seniors with confidence they can live more autonomously, secure in the knowledge that the city is looking out for their well-being.
Spaces in nursing homes and senior residences are limited and these accommodations often cost more than seniors can afford. Many seniors prefer to continue living in their own homes and apartments. This puts them at risk, especially if they have health concerns, live alone, or have a limited support network. More than 25% of all seniors in Canada live alone where there is often no one to watch over them to intervene when a problem arises. Our city offers many senior programs, but we feel it crucial to find technological ways to connect with isolated seniors.
We seek to implement a comprehensive yet cost effective solution that will provide peace of mind, security, and support for those who need it. It must be easy to use and affordable.
Our solution will help seniors who live alone by installing home monitoring sensors, GPS tracking, fall sensors and environmental sensors. It will use AI techniques to identify problems and share information gleaned with community, city and health services. It will allow us to know if the person living alone is okay, or not okay, and will route “situation analysis” reports to appropriate service organizations so that they can deliver timely intervention’.
Congratulations to our finalists. For more information and to see the full list go to: http://www.infrastructure.gc.ca/cities-villes/finalists-finalistes-eng.html