Portland selected as finalist in USDOT’s Smart City Challenge - KPTV - FOX 12

Portland selected as finalist in USDOT’s Smart City Challenge

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(File photo) (File photo)

The city of Portland has been selected as a finalist in the US Department of Transportation’s $50 million Smart City Challenge, according to the Portland Bureau of Transportation.

Portland is one of seven finalists chosen among 79 cities.

USDOT announced the finalists Saturday afternoon at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.

According to the Portland Bureau of Transportation, other cities selected as finalists include Austin, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Denver, and Columbus, Ohio.

The Smart City Challenge, which the USDOT announced late in 2015, is in partnership with the Vulcan, Inc.

USDOT encouraged cities to develop their best and most creative ideas for using advanced transportation technologies and data systems to reduce congestion; keep travelers safe; respond to climate change; better connect underserved communities to transportation options; and drive economic activity.

Portland’s proposal was called Ubiquitous Mobility for Portland, or UB Mobile PDX. The project presents a new vision for imagining and operating urban transportation.

The goal of this of this technology is to not only provide access and information about low-cost transportation choices, but will also support Portland's equity, economic development, and climate action goals, according to PBOT.

"As a leader in transportation innovation, Portland is uniquely positioned to spearhead an ambitious project like this," said Transportation Commissioner Steve Novick. "This award is a recognition that when it comes to creative approaches to complex transportation problems, we punch above our weight."

According to the release, Besides the $100,000 grant from USDOT, as a finalist Portland will also receive access to Infraworks 360, which is a powerful software tool used to design significant transportation projects.

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