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The information below chronicles The Transportation Alliance's activities from June 2015 to present. If you'd like to know more, click here for news going all the way back to 2003!

  • 10/15/2019

    NYU Engineering Team Wins Microtransit Hackathon


    In First-Ever Partnership, The Transportation Alliance Teams Up With IATR for Innovative Competition

    (ROCKVILLE, Md.)—The Transportation Alliance is pleased to announce an engineering team from New York University has won the association’s 2019 Microtransit Hackathon.

    The Transportation Alliance partnered with the International Association of Transportation Regulators (IATR) to host the 2019 Microtransit Hackathon from September 13-18. The winning team, named NYU BUILT, was one of four teams to participate in this industry first.

    During the five-day competition, university students examined anonymized taxi trip data from two cities—Toronto and St. Louis—provided by the dispatch software company CMT/Mobile Knowledge. Students were be tasked with identifying efficiencies and profit opportunities that could be used to map out possible microtransit routes for eight-passenger vans capable of also serving passengers who use wheelchairs.

    The winning team is comprised of team advisor Dr. Joseph Chow, team manager Ziyi Ma, and team members Gyugeun Yoon, Jinkai Zhou and Yueshuai (Brian) He. For their innovative solution, the team will receive a $5,000 prize—courtesy of The Taxicab, Limousine and Paratransit Foundation (TLPF) and Curb Mobility, LLC.

    “Competitions like this really show us how young minds can help us see new business opportunities in this industry,” said Robbie Werth, President of TLPF. “My sincere congratulations to team NYU BUILT and to all the universities who competed, as well as to our panel of volunteer judges from across North America. I also want to sincerely thank the IATR whose help was instrumental in this competition, our first-ever partnership.”

    “Regulators and the for-hire industry must be ahead of the curve with new technology and services to meet the needs of passengers and drivers,” said Matt Daus, President of IATR and Transportation Technology Chair at the City University of NY’s (CUNY) City College Transport Center. “One way that IATR and TTA are both realizing this vision is by using data-driven approaches to improving transportation services for the public through competitions involving the academic community, something we could not have done without the wonderful assistance and support of from CUNY and the University of California at Berkeley, where we hosted the data for this hackathon, along with our sponsors CMT and Curb.”

    The Transportation Alliance and IATR also want to express our deep thanks to Kendra Levine and Susan Shaheen of UC Berkeley, as well as Monica Fainshtein of IATR, for their work in making this a success.

    Representing the team at The Transportation Alliance’s annual convention and expo, Mobilize 2019, will be Ziyi Ma—an NYU graduate student in transportation and engineering studies. Ma will be accepting the award on the team’s behalf as well as presenting the team’s findings to those attending the convention being held October 16-19 in Las Vegas.

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