Waterloo Region is seeking community input for its Smart Cities Challenge bid

Posted on Friday February 16, 2018

As you may already be aware, the City of Cambridge is working in collaboration with the Region and area municipalities on an application for Infrastructure Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge.

The Smart Cities Challenge is a two phase funding competition open to all communities across Canada. The challenge empowers communities and residents to think big about their future to address community challenges using a smart cities approach.

A smart cities approach maximizes the benefits of data and advanced technology to address community and service delivery challenges to improve quality of life and enhance opportunities for citizens.

Applicants must select a challenge area to develop a challenge statement. All challenge statements must be measureable, ambitious and achievable and define the outcomes a community aims to achieve by implementing its smart cities proposal.

The City of Cambridge is encouraging community members to provide feedback on issues they would like to see addressed, like high school graduation rates or affordable housing. Feedback collected will be used to inform SmartWR’s funding proposal. Winning proposals will be awarded with up to $50 million in prize money to help communities implement their smart cities solutions.

The Smart Cities Challenge asks leaders of communities to team up with pioneering businesses, academia, and civic organizations to design innovative solutions to address their most pressing challenges using data and connected technologies. 

Public input can be provided in two ways: Through the Smart Waterloo Region Survey or in-person at Smart Waterloo Region open houses taking place on:

  • February 15: Woolwich Memorial Centre, 24 Snyder Ave S, Elmira, Room #2, from 1:30-3:30 p.m.
  • February 26: Cambridge City Hall, 50 Dickson St, Cambridge, Bowman Room, from 6-9 p.m.
  • February 27: Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex, 101 Father David Bauer Drive, room 200, from 6-9 p.m.
  • March 1: Kitchener City Hall, 200 King St. W., the Rotunda, from 4:30-7:30 p.m.

Funding applications are due April 28th, 2018. Infrastructure Canada will be announcing phase one finalists of the Smart Cities Challenge in the summer of 2018. Those short listed will be awarded funds to complete phase two of the application process. Winners of the Smart Cities Challenge will be announced in early 2019.