A driverless shuttle in Surrey. (File photo)

A driverless shuttle in Surrey. (File photo)

Driverless shuttle project in Surrey/Vancouver loses Smart Cities Challenge

$50M in funding was up for grabs in Canada-wide competition

A joint Surrey/Vancouver bid to create Canada’s first two “collision free multi-modal corridors” using automated shuttles was not the winner of the nation’s Smart Cities Challenge.

The competition winners were announced Tuesday (May 14) at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, with a project in Montreal (involving “mobility and access to food”) named winner of the top prize.

The Surrey/Vancouver proposal had hoped to share $50 million to create its project.

The proposed networks in Surrey and Vancouver were to be located near SkyTrain Stations, essentially expanding the driverless transit network in the region.

Tuesday’s announcement was live-streamed on Infrastructure Canada’s Youtube channel.

• RELATED STORY: A closer look at driverless shuttles proposed in Surrey, Vancouver, from December 2018.

Four Canadian communities won prizes to cap Canada’s first-ever Smart Cities Challenge, a two-year competition designed to encourage communities across the country “to harness the potential of technology and data to improve the lives of Canadians.”

The cash prizes – one worth $5 million, two of $10 million each and one of $50 million – will be used by the winners to turn their visions into reality.

For the top prize, the Surrey/Vancouver proposal was among five of 16 shortlisted to receive Infrastructure Canada funding. There were 199 applicants from across the county, and of 16 submissions, the Surrey/Vancouver bid made the top five along with projects in Edmonton, Quebec City, Waterloo and Montreal.

CLICK HERE to read the complete Surrey/Vancouver proposal.

In Surrey and Vancouver, the projects would incorporate “Intelligent Transportation Systems, adaptive traffic signals and controls, advanced traffic cameras, smart crossing, smart parking, interactive kiosks, (and) travel time information.”

Two pilot projects proposed in Surrey would be activated in two phases.

Phase one would be a “University Drive Pilot” that would include run for one year along University Drive from roughly 102nd and 108th avenues, primarily separated from traffic. It would be a “1.2-kilometre dedicated autonomous vehicle demonstration route in the heart of Surrey City Centre, linking Surrey Central SkyTrain Station with Gateway SkyTrain Station.”

If created, it would “deploy automated shuttles in exclusive rights-of-way to allow for changes in legislation that will permit on-road deployment of automated vehicles” and “capitalize on opportunities to pilot enhanced safety technologies, (and) familiarize city operations with autonomous vehicle technology.”

The two collision-free corridors — Vancouver’s South False Creek Innovation Corridor and the Surrey Innovation Corridor — would aim to achieve a number of outcomes including “improved safety, reduced emissions, healthier communities, increased availability of mobility options, more socially connected communities, increased accessibility to the community higher people-moving capacity, an enhanced travel experience.”

with files from Amy Reid

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Photo by Kevin Hill)
40 cases linked to Surrey Memorial Hospital COVID-19 outbreak

Fraser Health says two death are associated with the outbreak

Surrey Council Chambers. (File photo)
Surrey city councillors complain not enough public input in committees

City has gone ‘exactly the opposite direction,’ Councillor Brenda Locke charges

Music therapist Felicia Wall in the music room at Phoenix Society in Surrey. (submitted photo)
Eclectic album showcases songs recorded by Surrey residents in recovery

Project at Phoenix Society took about six months to complete, with help of music therapist

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)
Sources team members (left to right) Carrie Belanger, Abby Gemino, Tatiana Belyaeva, Yasmin de Joya-Pagal cheer during the 2020 Coldest Night of the Year event. This year’s event will be virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Sources photo)
White Rock’s Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser goes virtual

Annual walk raises funds for variety of Sources programs and services

Keith the curious kitten is seen on Nov. 4, 2020 at the Chilliwack SPCA. Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 is Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 17 to 23

Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, Pie Day and International Sweatpants Day are all coming up this week

A unique-looking deer has been visiting a Nanoose Bay property with its mother. (Frieda Van der Ree photo)
A deer with 3 ears? Unique animal routinely visits B.C. property

Experts say interesting look may be result of an injury rather than an odd birth defect

Sooke’s Jim Bottomley is among a handful of futurists based in Canada. “I want to help people understand the future of humanity.” (Aaron Guillen - Sooke News Mirror)
No crystal ball: B.C. man reveals how he makes his living predicting the future

63-year-old has worked analytical magic for politicians, car brands, and cosmetic companies

Terry David Mulligan. (Submitted photo)
Podcast: Interview with longtime actor/broadcaster and B.C. resident Terry David Mulligan

Podcast: Talk includes TDM’s RCMP career, radio, TV, wine, Janis Joplin and much more

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)
Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Most Read