The public has just a few days left to take a virtual ride on an autonomous shuttle and take a short survey about their experiences. The virtual ride and survey are available through Saturday, August 4 at shuttle.lincoln.ne.gov. Paper copies are also available at all Lincoln City Library locations, and the public access computers at libraries have a link to the survey. A shortened survey was also included in the Neighborhood Extra section of the Lincoln Journal Star last Saturday, July 28.
More than 1,500 riders recently participated in the test of a Navya shuttle at Nebraska Innovation Campus. Lincoln was able to lease the shuttle because of a $100,000 grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies as part of its Mayor's Challenge. In February, Bloomberg named Lincoln one of 35 Champion Cities selected out of 320 applications to move to the next round of the competition.
Lincoln has been working with Bloomberg to further develop the shuttle concept for its final application in August. In October, four cities will receive $1 million awards and one will receive a grand prize of $5 million to implement its idea. To proceed to the next stage, the City must get feedback from likely shuttle users and other members of the public to develop plans for a longer-term shuttle service.
The Public Policy Center at the University of Nebraska helped design a "virtual service journey" survey that allows the public to imagine riding the autonomous shuttle and provide feedback on their experience. The virtual ride -- a 360 degree video that allows participants to "look around" as they ride the shuttle -- works best on a computer or laptop rather than a mobile device
If Lincoln's demo is successful and additional funding is received, four to six autonomous shuttles could travel along fixed routes in downtown Lincoln as part of a pilot program as early as 2019. Riders would summon the shuttles using smart phones or kiosks.
The City's partners in the project include HDR, Allo, Nelnet, the University of Nebraska - Lincoln, Nebraska Innovation Campus, Nebraska Innovation Studio, the Downtown Lincoln Association and The Mill. More information on Lincoln's project is available at shuttle.lincoln.ne.gov.
About the 2018 Mayors Challenge
The 35 Champion Cities performed the best against four key criteria - vision, potential for impact, implementation plan and potential to spread to other cities. A prestigious selection committee assessed the applications. It was Co-Chaired by Former Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and Former Xerox Chairman and CEO Ursula Burns and included distinguished policy experts, artists, academics, business executives and social innovation leaders.
The 2018 Mayors Challenge builds on the success of previous Bloomberg-sponsored Challenges in the U.S. (2013), Europe (2014), and Latin America and the Caribbean (2016). For more information, visit mayorschallenge.bloomberg.org and @BloombergCities on Twitter and Instagram.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies works in over 120 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg's charitable activities, including his foundation and his personal giving. In 2016, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $600 million. For more information, please visit www.bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.