IBM experts to tackle BR's transportation pains
BATON ROUGE - Transportation headaches have long been as much a part of life in the Capital City as LSU tailgating and Pat Shingleton's weather forecasts. On Monday, a team of IBM experts will come together to kick off a study that could produce a solution to one of Baton Rouge's biggest problems.
The IBM Smarter Cities Challenge is an initiative by one of the most dominant technology corporations in the world to help 16 cities and regions around the globe address vital issues ranging from clean water, food supplies, job development and efficient transportation, and Baton Rouge is one of four U.S. cities chosen to receive IBM's pro bono consulting expertise.
Teams from IBM will spend three weeks in and around Baton Rouge as they gather and analyze all the data they need to unravel the Red Stick's transit troubles. During their study, they will meet with members of the local government, citizens, business owners and not-for-profit communities to gather a wide range of views about where BR's transportation woes originate and what solutions can unravel the long-standing issue.
At the end of the study, IBM will produce a detailed, written implementation plan that will give city government a clear course of action that could be the solution to a problem that has afflicted the city for years.
Originally conceived in 2011, the Smarter Cities Challenge is the tech corporation's largest community initiative, and more than $50 million in investments have been made in over 100 cities all around the world in just the past three years. The three-week engagement Baton Rouge will receive is value at an estimated $500,000.
The study officially begins on Monday, Sept. 29 in the Metro Council Chamber as Mayor-President "Kip" Holden and other community leaders from around the City-Parish welcome the team of IBM experts to Baton Rouge. After introductions, they will begin the discussion of our oftentimes traumatic traffic and transportation situation.
To learn more about the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge, and how it has benefited other cities and regions in previous studies, check out smartercitieschallenge.org.