Columbus receives $140 million for “smart city” initiative

Columbus receives $140 million for

Columbus, Ohio has been selected to serve as a testbed for the “smart city” of the future, beating out 77 other cities in a contest held by the US Department of Transportation.

According to Autoblog, this means that Columbus will become a “living laboratory” for technologies such as autonomous cars, intra-vehicle “connected” communications, and battery development.

In practice, that means an increased network of EV charging stations, autonomous shuttles between retail and office spaces, and provide transportation for healthcare, especially to pregnancy in neighborhoods knon to have a higher-than-average infant mortality rates.

The process of developing, transforming existing infrastructure, and integrating the multitude of technologies will present unique problems that the program hopes to learn from to apply to other cities in the future.

As winners in the selection process, Columbus will receive $40 million from the DOT to add to the 10 million from Vulcan Inc., a company devoted to researching large-scale issues founded by Microsoft’s cofounder Paul G. Allen, and $90 million more that the city raised from private companies such as Amazon Web Services, AT&T, Google parent Alphabet, and DC Solar.

Columbus bills itself as the fastest growing midwest city in the video application it created for the contest. It should be noted that it is also the metropolitan area of which Marysville, home to Honda‘s extensive manufacturing facilities, is a suburb.

See the full press release at the DOT homepage.

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