Columbus named finalist in “Smart Cities Challenge”

Dell ranked Columbus the 24 the most Future Ready city in the country.

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio’s capital city was named a finalist in a national competition to find the most creative, data-driven and technology-advanced cities in the United States.

The City of Columbus has been named one of seven finalists among medium-sized cities from across the country in the U.S. Department of Transportation’s “Smart Cities Challenge.”

According to a release from Mayor Andrew Ginther’s office, the competition seeks to create an innovative, fully-integrated model city that uses data, technology and creativity to shape how people and goods are transported in the future. If chosen as the winner of the “Smart Cities Challenge,” Columbus would become the nation’s epicenter of advanced vehicle and transportation infrastructure research and development.

“As one of fastest growing metropolitan areas in the Midwest, Columbus is poised to lead the way in the future of transportation,” Ginther stated in the release. “As a finalist in the Smart Cities Challenge, we are excited to refine our proposal for a multi-modal method of moving people between their jobs, their homes and recreation using innovative technologies developed by partnerships with some of the best talents in the industry — that just happens to be right here in Columbus.”

The other cities in the top seven are Austin, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, Denver, Portland and Kansas City. Each will refine their proposed projects and programs using $100,000 from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

“With its long legacy of innovation and commitment to developing new technology, Columbus is the best choice for the Smart City Challenge,” Sen. Sherrod Brown stated in a release. “The City of Columbus’ Smart City Plan would enhance transportation service by increasing access to jobs, linking neighborhoods and improving real-time information in a sustainable, safe way. This funding would help the city realize its vision to ‘be a community that provides beauty, prosperity, and health for all of its citizens.’”

The winning city, which will be announced in June, will be awarded up to $40 million from the federal government to implement bold, data-driven ideas that make transportation safer, easier and more reliable.

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