The West Kootenay region of British Columbia has been selected to participate in the BC Smart Communities pilot.
The municipalities of Castlegar, Nelson, Rossland and Trail will receive a total of $40,000 to develop and test a new SmartTransportation mobile app, which will provide residents with information about road safety, closures, wait times, and natural disasters. The platform will help people make smart transportation decisions, resulting in safe and efficient travel that decreases accidents and reduces pollutants. BC tech company Martech Smart Solutions will build the mobility platform, which will bring multiple data sources together into a single application.
“Smart technology can place useful information at people’s fingertips to make our neighbourhoods safer and our lives more efficient,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “Small communities should not be left apart from innovation, and our government is taking action to ensure smart solutions are developed around the province to help make life better for everyone.”
People living in British Columbia’s rural and smaller centres need access to data and technology as much as people in urban centres. Through the Smart Communities pilot program, the BC government is encouraging municipalities to develop and use innovative technology that will transform everyday challenges into sustainable solutions.
“The BC Smart Communities pilot program is dedicated to supporting people living in smaller centres and rural areas, helping them access technology that will enhance their lives,” said Shirley Vickers, president and CEO of Innovate BC, the Crown agency distributing the winning grants. “The successful projects represent modern solutions to local problems and will help benefit people where they live.”
The District of Logan Lake, the City of Port Alberni and the City of Prince Rupert were also among the four successful proponents of the B.C. Smart Communities pilot project. The Province of British Columbia will provide a total of $130,000 to the four winning cities through Innovate BC to fund each project for one year.