New Westminster – The City of New Westminster has proclaimed February 23-March 3 Innovation Week in New Westminster, a showcase of the City’s increasing role as a regional centre for research, technology and innovation as well as provide opportunities to learn, showcase and experience innovation in action, and features a number of events and activities for all ages: from startups to kids to business leaders to residents. This year, Innovation Week is all about transportation.
A key component of Innovation Week is Hack Our City, a two-day Hack-a-thon, February 24 and 25, taking place at Douglas College and sponsored by Amazon and TransLink.
“Amazon is proud to once again support the city’s Innovation Week and to sponsor Hack Our City. This event brings together the New Westminster community to think big about new ideas, and to invent and simplify solutions to problems through the use of open data,” said Jesse Dougherty, General Manager of Amazon Vancouver. “We are very happy to be a part of the community in New Westminster, and are excited to see what transportation-themed apps and projects come out of the hack-a-thon at Douglas College."
Hack Our City features teams of coders using open data to build an app or project that addresses three transportation-related themes: planning and seamless mobility, addressing congestion, safety and accessibility. Using the City’s growing collection of 175+ open datasets, and drawing from open data sets from Modo Car Co-op, TransLink, and other sources, teams compete over two days.
Additionally, the hackers can opt-in to workshops on building for privacy with Cindy Oxenbury from Canopy Privacy, and their presentation skills with Steve Kim from VANTEC Angel Network.
The presentations and awards are open to the public and take place in lecture theatre N2201 at Douglas College’s New Westminster campus on Sunday, February 25th starting at 3:00 pm. A panel of esteemed judges - including Mayor Jonathan Coté and senior leadership from Amazon, TransLink, and Douglas College - will listen to the hackers’ pitches and provide feedback before awarding cash prizes: $750 for 1st, $350 for 2nd, $250 for 3rd, plus a bonus prize of $150 for the best presentation. Additionally, the first place team can also take advantage of an AIM (accelerate, innovate, motivate) mentorship pack from local business TerraTap Technologies, valued at $4000.
Innovation Week features a number of other events that allow businesses, investors and community members alike to engage, such as the Innovation Forum, New Westminster Business and Tech Meetup, the VANTEC Pitch Circuit, CORPUS at the New Media Gallery, New West PechaKucha Volume 18, the Business Expo, and the Transportation Forum. A full listing and details of all events are available on the City’s website at www.newwestcity.ca/innovatenw, including the link to register your hacking team. Registrations are open until all spaces are filled, or until 9:00 am Monday, February 12, 2018.