Linden Neighborhood Conversation

Melanie Crabill
Director of Media Relations
[email protected]

Kevin Kilbane
Director of Communications
[email protected]

Media Advisory
News Date: May 24, 2016

Mayor Andrew J. Ginther announces submission of Smart City Challenge final application

Mayor Andrew J. Ginther announced that the Smart City Challenge application for the City of Columbus has been submitted to the U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) at an open house event at Rev1 Ventures, a top venture development corporation. In addition, Alex Fischer, President and CEO of the Columbus Partnership, a civic coalition made up of more than 50 of the region’s leading corporate and institutional leaders, announced the creation of the Smart Columbus Acceleration Fund. Smart Columbus has committed $90 million in matching resources and funds to make Columbus the future of mobility and provide enhanced ladders of opportunity to our residents to better access jobs, fresh food, services, education and recreation.  

“I am so pleased with our team and our partners for all of their hard work over the past several months in preparing the final application,” said Mayor Andrew J. Ginther. “The Acceleration Fund is a testament to ‘The Columbus Way’ of collaboration between public and private partnerships. The Columbus Partnership, under the leadership of Alex Fischer, has been key in engaging the private sector and relevant industry experts in our bringing the business community on board with the Smart Columbus vision.”

The Smart City Challenge is a grant opportunity from the U.S. DOT worth $40 million to the mid-sized city who presents the best innovative, fully-integrated model that uses data, technology and creativity to shape how people and goods are transported in the future. Vulcan Inc. will also contribute $10 million toward electric vehicle infrastructure and the reduction of greenhouse gases. In March, Columbus was chosen as one of seven finalist cities from a pool of 78 applications. The winning city will be announced in late June.

“The Acceleration Fund is an aggregation of the relevant industry expertise and resources that demonstrate Columbus’ commitment to the Mayor’s vision and to our ability to lead America in deploying the next generation of smart transportation technologies,” said Fischer. “The Partnership’s number one priority is to drive economic prosperity for all of Columbus, and that is why this opportunity is so exciting to us.”

Columbus’ Smart City Challenge grant application includes:

•             An autonomous vehicle circulator to address first mile/last mile challenges from the Easton Transit Center to Easton employers.

•             Enhanced traveler information through kiosks, broadband connectivity and smart intersections along the new CMAX Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Corridor from Polaris to Downtown.

•             Development of real-time event, transit, traffic and parking information for visitors and residents created with Experience Columbus.

•             Enable all citizens to have access and be able pay for all the transportation options in our City with a smartphone or pass.

•             Expanding Smart Grid to other parts of the City, expanding electric vehicle charging infrastructure, beginning converting the light duty city fleet to electric vehicles (EVs) and creating programs and incentives for energy efficiency, transportation electrification, and greenhouse gas reduction that is environmentally and financially sustainable.

The Smart Columbus application includes partnerships with The Ohio State University, Battelle, American Electric Power, Honda, IBM and many more.