This week, the city of Toronto is participating in the launch of UPPLift, an urban pilot program (UPP) seeking tech innovations tackling challenges in urban areas and their existing infrastructure.
Supported by partners like Microsoft and QuadReal Property Group, the UPPLift program is making a call for innovators that can solve problems laid out by test-bed partners. Challenges posed by QuadReal include enhancing energy efficiency in buildings, or providing traffic analyses or forecasts for retailers.
Toronto is participating through its Green Market Acceleration Program, which allows local firms and foreign investors to collaborate with the city to support cleantech tech.
“We’re seeing a rising trend in the creation of smart cities, but we can’t forget that there is existing infrastructure that needs to move with us into the coming decades,” said Mikele Brack, founder of Urban Living Futures, the company behind UPPlift. “Toronto is a world-class city with wonderful historic and modern features. As urban migration continues and new technologies emerge, we’re looking to make improvements to the built environment that will ultimately benefit the people and communities who live and work within it every day.”
Shortlisted applicants will be announced in February, and successful entrants will receive technology, support, and expertise from Microsoft and Intel to be coached through the development of business plans for their pilots. Five to ten outstanding innovators will be selected, with pilot to be run exclusively in QuadReal office buildings in the downtown core and with the City of Toronto. Selected projects can also expect to receive additional in-kind support from Fasken, Toronto Hydro, and Communitech.
Applications are open until February 11.