The Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) is proactively soliciting interest in Smart Communities projects throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. We have several programs to support innovation in Smart Technologies, including grants and seed-stage funding opportunities. CIT Smart Communities is the team that helps entrepreneurs and stakeholders move Smart ideas, innovations, and inventions through the testing and pilot phases to prepare them for commercialization, funding, and success in the market. CIT Smart creates opportunities through facilitating partnerships, research support, raising capital, and community development. The goal is to connect public and private resources so that Virginia can more quickly realize the value and benefits of Smart Communities initiatives for our citizens, businesses, non-profits, and visitors.
You may have heard that Stafford County partnered with CIT to help define “Smart” for the new “Smart” Downtown Stafford. CIT helped with the vision and plan and is an active part of ongoing project execution through pilot funding and technical expertise. (How did that get started? Read about what sparked it: Stafford targeted to become Virginia’s first Smart Community)
The Fredericksburg Riverfront Park. CIT has worked with city planners and IT staff to help design and define what will make the park “Smart.” Solutions include fiber conduit replacing electric conduit to save costs, a leading-edge electronics package for the lighting poles to support Wi-Fi access, cameras, sensors, and built-in room for future technology growth. Plans for a concert area and informational kiosk and integration to the city IT infrastructure are also focal points of this project.
Let’s discuss what we want to plan for our Shenandoah Valley!? What project lends itself? Autonomous shuttles? IoT for public safety?
1. What is the difference between a Smart Community and a Smart City?
A Smart Community is a town, suburb, rural area, county, or city that uses a variety of technologies to enhance the quality of life. A Smart City is just one example of a Smart Community. Smart Communities employ technology to address unique local needs such as improving government services, boosting performance and lowering costs, lessening environmental impacts, and bettering where we work, live, and play. The benefits of Smart Communities come from new technology-based job opportunities, new public services, and cost efficiencies of using data proactively to address local issues. These benefits are the result of better access to broadband networks, sensor-driven data, analytics, and newly enabled information applications. Smart Communities
are the building blocks for smart regions, states, and countries
2. CIT SMART
Smart Community pilot projects rely on “Community-Driven Innovation” to identify topics relevant to each community and connect commercial technology partners to demonstrate solutions. CIT Smart helps coordinate the Community-Driven process by jointly developing a technology vision with the community, establishing partnerships, and providing pilot project funding. Smart Communities VA – Program Overview
About Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority (VIPA)
The Virginia Innovation Partnership Authority (VIPA) was established in 2020 to support the life cycle of innovation, from translational research; to entrepreneurship; to pre-seed and seed-stage funding; as well as acceleration, growth, and commercialization, resulting in the creation of new jobs and company formation. The Authority provides a collaborative, consistent, and consolidated approach that will assist the Commonwealth in identifying its entrepreneurial strengths, including the identification of talents and resources that make the Commonwealth a unique place to grow and attract technology-based businesses.
About the Speaker
Mr. Ihrie has over 40 years of industry experience as a direct innovator in the fields of satellite and terrestrial communication, computing, and information science, and has been a principal in seven startup companies. In addition to his entrepreneurial activities, Mr. Ihrie has helped build four national scale business accelerators for the Intelligence Community, for DHS, and in the areas of cybersecurity and smart cities. Currently, he is leading the Virginia Strategic Initiatives portfolio including Smart Communities initiatives, the Virginia Unmanned Systems Center at CIT, and the SCITI Labs program with DHS Science & Technology focused on public safety capabilities. Mr. Ihrie has a Master of Science degree in Business from MIT, specializing in the Management of Technological Innovation, and a B.S. from MIT in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science.
Register for SVTC’s Feb. 2021 Luncheon: Innovation Partnerships for Virginia