Infrastructure Canada recently launched its first-ever Smart Cities Challenge as part of the Investing in Canada federal initiative. The goal is to encourage communities to be more innovative with respect to smart data and connected technology.
The Smart Cities Challenge is open to communities of all sizes across Canada, and projects with a water focus are eligible. In the fourth example outlined in the applicant guide, flood damage preventative measures are one such area that can help communities be smarter, whether it is deploying environmental sensors to monitor flow amounts or implementing an integrated, AI-enabled, flood warning decision support system.
Four Smart Cities Challenge prizes are available this round: one prize of up to $50 million, available to all communities; two prizes of up to $10 million, available to all communities below 500,000 residents; and one prize of up to $5 million, available to all communities below 30,000 residents Finalists will be announced in Summer 2018, and winners will be announced in Spring 2019.
Communities have until April 24, 2018 to submit their applications. Those that are selected as finalists by the Smart Cities Challenge independent jury will receive a grant of $250,000 to support the development of their detailed proposal and business case. Winners will receive funding to implement their proposals.
Finalists and winning communities will be selected by an independent jury. An open call for jury members is posted on the Infrastructure Canada website.