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An Oregon suburb’s idea to make commuting more efficient, pleasant, affordable, and good for the environment is in the running to win $5 million through a competition run by Bloomberg Philanthropies.Hillsboro, a small city outside Portland, is one of 20 finalists in the Mayor’s Challenge, a call for cities to find new solutions to urban problems.
The final winner and four runners-up will be selected by a panel of judges; first place will get the $5 million purse; the runners-up will each receive $1 million.
The public will get its say as well: The Huffington Post is hosting voting for a fan favourite. After the polls close on March 6, the winning city will receive a $50,000 grant from IBM to implement its idea.
Of the finalist cities, Hillsboro is one of the smallest, and the only to focus on transportation. Cincinnati is taking on infant mortality, Knoxville is working on urban farming, and Providence is tackling early childhood literacy.
In an op-ed, Mayor Jerry Willey argues Hillsboro’s GoPoint system will offer suburban residents a variety of ways to make their commutes more pleasant and efficient. The city also produced a video explaining how the system would work:
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