Vancouverites invited to help solve city’s congestion problems at hackathon


Vancouverites are invited to put their thinking caps on and help the City of Vancouver ‘decode’ congestion issues at an upcoming Hackathon event.

After the success of last year’s VANquish Collisions Hackathon, the City decided to host a second event to develop solutions to improve the flow of people and goods throughout Vancouver.

Metro Vancouver planners predict another one million people will be living in an already congested and expensive region by 2050. Photo Dan Toulgoet

The City is calling on strategists, designers, technologists, transportation professionals and engaged residents to participate in the three-day collaborative workshop.

Lon LaClaire, director of transportation, said last year’s hackathon was an incredibly rewarding experience, with 120 people participating, along with 33 experts volunteering as judges and mentors.

“This year’s event will be equally challenging,” he said.

“It relates to a number of strategies and targets the City has set, including reducing transportation-related fatalities to zero and having two-thirds of all trips made by walking, cycling or transit by 2040. Our street network is also largely built out so we need to make the most out it.”

Last year’s hackathon resulted in one of the teams signing a contract with the City to develop an app for safe walking routes to school.

LaClaire said hackers will have one evening and two full days to work in teams coding collaboratively to create digital solutions to solve a specific problem. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three — First place takes home $5000, second place gets $2000 and third place earns $500.

The City is encouraging anyone with a background in data science and technology, web app development, interface, graphic design, and data stories to register for the event.

Using data and information provided, participants will have the opportunity to develop and present their solutions that focus on one of five key areas:

• Improve monitoring of traffic conditions and trends
• Improve road safety
• Ensure a smart and efficient transportation system
• Coordinate street use
• Prioritize people and goods movement

Ideas will be judged on innovation, feasibility, user experience, strategic thinking and alignment with the challenge.

For more information about this event visit Decode Congestion.

Event details

Dates: November 8 at 6pm to November 10 at 5pm.
Location: Wayne & William White Engineering Design Centre (EDC Room 102),
University of British Columbia
Registration: Residents can sign up to participate HERE.
Food: Meals will be provided.