Transport for NSW will launch a 12-month 'Future Transport' program in April, where technologists can pitch their ideas to government around improving the state’s transport system.
The department is looking for technology solutions for problems around efficiency, traffic congestion, time tabling, customer service, and infrastructure planning and development.
It is interested in exploring the potential of driverless vehicles and trains, ridesharing and travel journey apps, real time route optimisation technologies, and Internet of Things to solve these problems. It also wants to uncover new ways to tap into data coming from the Opal ticketing system.
But the program is open to any idea that could have a positive impact on transport, the department said.
The 12-month program will kick off on 18-19 of April with a two-day summit that will bring together thought leaders, IT specialists, innovators, futurists, transport leaders and academics from around the world. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak will speak at the summit, with more than 150 leaders in the transport space invited to the summit.
“We’ve got big data happening, Opal, ridesharing and the advent of the driverless car around the corner – I want to work with those in-the-know to get a better grasp of what's coming next and how we can adapt,” Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Andrew Constance, said in a statement.
“The summit is a way to start thinking about how we’re going to get people in towns and cities across NSW from point A to point B using the latest advances in technology from around the world," he said.
Companies that register for the summit will be able to pitch their ideas. Community members are also invited to contribute through online forums during the 12-month program. Transport for NSW is also looking to partner with incubators, and will hold a youth summit later in the year.
"The state's population is going to increase by about two million people by 2031. As well as building new infrastructure, we need to look at smarter systems and technology-driven solutions to cope with demand," Constance said.
“It's no secret NSW has lagged behind the rest of the world and I am determined to turn that around.
"We need to stay ahead of the game so it's time we ask, what are the next big ideas? What are the next systems and technologies that are going to challenge us and shape the transport system in NSW?”
The details of the youth summit and online forums are yet to be released but CIO Australia will provide more information as it comes to hand.