City of Montreal signs two-year pilot project partnership with Waze

The City of Montreal has signed on for a free partnership with Waze as part of a two-year pilot project. The agreement, which is part of Waze’s Connected Citizens Program, will call for two-way data sharing of publicly available traffic information within Ville-Marie borough using Waze.

The news was announced by Aref Salem, member of the city’s executive committee in charge of transportation; Harout Chitilian, vice-chair of the city’s executive committee and member in charge of smart city initiatives; and Lionel Perez, who is in charge of infrastructures on the executive committee.

“As part of this innovative partnership, the participatory information of Waze users will help to fuel the city’s Centre de gestion de la mobilité urbaine de Montréal (CGMU). By obtaining real-time data, the city wants to improve its reactivity to traffic jams, accidents or other incidents on the road and minimize the impact on drivers. Montréal is the first city in Canada to use Waze data, and if the project is conclusive, we plan to extend its deployment across the city,” said Salem.

The city will make its planned traffic obstruction data available to Waze, while Waze will provide the city with real-time, anonymous, Waze-generated incident and slow-down information generated from its platform. The CGMU, a series of street surveillance cameras that help the city manage traffic in real time and encourage communication between its partner control centres, is supposed to be one of the city’s initiatives expected to receive the benefit. The city said that as unplanned incidents arise, instantaneous information sharing becomes crucial — the latter being Waze’s specialty, as it collects real-time traffic and road condition information through its community.

“This year, there will be a number of major construction projects in Ville-Marie. This pilot project is a concrete illustration of initiatives to facilitate road travel for users when there are obstructions to traffic,” said Perez. In Montreal, Waze has 103,000 monthly active users in Montréal who drive more than 19 million kilometres each month with the app. In December alone, they reported nearly 250,000 incidents.

This project is one of 70 projects in the Montréal Smart and Digital City 2015 Action Plan. A complete version of the plan can be found here.

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Freelance tech writer. Former BetaKit News Editor.