Nov 15: Webinar on Transforming Urban Transport – The Role of Political Leadership

In this panel, Professor Diane Davis and Senior Researcher Lily Song will share findings from TUT-POL case studies of New York’s urban streets initiatives, Stockholm’s adoption of congestion pricing, and Seoul’s combined highway demolition, bus system overhaul, and urban regeneration while discussing political conditions and processes explaining implementation successes.

In particular, the presentation will highlight the use of data and evidence (e.g. GPS data, polling data, voter trends), public engagement and communication (e.g. public outreach campaigns, voter referendum, working committees/public task forces), and organizational and policy management in promoting implementation of urban transport policies intended to challenge car-centrism and change mode-share while also fostering mobility and environmental aims. Read more…

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Read Uber’s entire 98-page plan to make flying cars a reality in the next decade

From Avery Hartmans, Business Insider

Uber has a new plan for making commuting faster: flying cars.

The company debuted its new project for electric aircraft that takes off and lands vertically in a white paper it published Thursday. Dubbed Uber Elevate, the project aims to have the aircraft in cities by the year 2026.

Read the full article at http://www.businessinsider.com/uber-elevate-flying-car-plan-white-paper-2016-10/#-1.

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Meet Norwegian Mobility Delegation (Nov 7 & Nov 8) [By Invitation

UM-SMART is receiving a small delegation from the mayor’s office in Sør-Trøndelag in Norway on November 7 and 8. The purpose of their visit is to explore the future of mobility for their inhabitants and to look for collaborative ways to advance Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS).

As a friend of SMART if you’re interested in meeting with them, there may be a possibility to join one of the invitation-only meetings. Please email Komal Doshi at kanand@umich.edu for more details and timing.

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Sorry, But Driverless Cars Aren’t Right Around the Corner

From John Battelle, published on LinkedIn

Here in the Valley, we’d prefer our technology to be free of annoying social complexities. We’re extremely good at imagining a world where a particular innovation has won the day, but we’re also pretty talented at ignoring the messy transitions necessary to actually get there.

Our most current case in point is the autonomous vehicle. The received wisdom in the Valley is that the technology for self-driving cars is already here — we just have to wait a few years while the slowpokes in Washington get with the program. Within five years, we’ll all be autopiloted around — free to spend our otherwise unproductive driving time answering email, Snapchatting, or writing code.

Read the full article at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/sorry-driverless-cars-arent-right-around-corner-john-battelle.

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SeaBubbles wants to be the Uber for waterborne transportation

From Andrew J . Hawkins, The Verge

When our streets become too congested, why not take to the open water to get around? SeaBubbles is a startup that aims to revolutionize waterborne transportation through fleets of sleek, hydrofoil-equipped shuttles designed to make city travel more convenient, leisurely, and sustainable.

Think of them as futuristic water taxis. Alain Thebault and Anders Bringdal, a sailor and windsurfer respectively, started the company seven months ago and have already raised $500,000, with a goal of raising $1 million more by next year. Backers include the founder of drone-maker Parrot, Partech Ventures, and the French government-backed BPI fund. The founders hope to have a prototype to show off at next year’s CES, and are aiming to have over a dozen vessels in the River Seine in Paris by summer 2017.

Read the full article at http://www.theverge.com/2016/10/8/13203198/seabubbles-wants-to-be-the-uber-for-waterborne-transportation.

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Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs aims to transform 16 cities into tech-friendly laboratories

From Andrew J . Hawkins, The Verge

Cities across the country are clamoring for technological upgrades to transform themselves from cities of the past into “smart cities” of the future. Today, Sidewalk Labs says it will help over a dozen cities do just that. The Google smart city spinoff announced today that it will join forces with national advocacy group Transportation For America (T4A) to help 16 cities better prepare themselves for innovations like self-driving cars and ride-sharing apps, as well as share information with each other to find out what works and what doesn’t.

The collaboration is an effort to capitalize on the momentum created by the White House’s Smart City Challenge, a competition for midsized cities to rethink urban transportation using technology like self-driving cars and smart street lights. In June, the top prize was awarded to Columbus, Ohio, which edged out six other finalists to win $40 million in federal grant money to enact its proposal.

Read the full article at http://www.theverge.com/2016/10/18/13316500/sidewalk-labs-google-alphabet-smart-city-transportation.

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