West is best: transport technology research hub

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research hub
The existing Crashlab site in Western Sydney will house the new research hub for transport technologies.

Western Sydney will be the home of a new research hub for emerging transport technologies.

Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance and Minister for Roads Duncan Gay have announced the establishment of the state’s first Smart Innovation Centre in Western Sydney – a new research and development hub for emerging transport and road technology.

Mr Constance said the new centre will be a world-class innovation incubator which brings together industry, investors, researchers, government agencies, vehicle manufacturers, technology providers and data analysts to maximise opportunities – right here in NSW.

“This government is not prepared to sit around waiting for someone else to come up with the next big innovation around technologies for connected transport – we want to be a part of it,” Mr Constance said.

[social_quote duplicate=”no” align=”default”]“The centre will also help us understand how we need to plan and build road and transport infrastructure to prepare for future technology.[/social_quote]

“Partnerships with local and international experts will be vital to the success of the Smart Innovation Centre.

“We are calling for expressions of interest from industry, investors and academics to bring visionary commercial and technical expertise to our world leading centre.”

Mr Gay said this wasn’t just about future technology for infrastructure – we’ll also be looking towards the future of automated vehicles.

“Road safety is one of the NSW Government’s key priorities as new vehicle technology is developed and made available.

“To prepare for the arrival of automated vehicles in the Australian car market, we’re working closely with our federal and interstate counterparts examining the necessary legislative, regulatory and road design changes – we want to get this right.

[social_quote duplicate=”no” align=”default”]“This hub is going to support and optimise the outcomes of the introduction of automated vehicles as well as look at solutions for congestion and road safety.’’[/social_quote]

The existing Crashlab in Western Sydney will be transformed into the leading research and testing facility.

“It makes sense to locate the centre in Western Sydney, in a location that has plenty of opportunity in the country’s third largest economy and one of the biggest contributors to Australia’s ideas boom,” Mr Gay said.

The Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) has welcomed the announcement.

research hub
Good move: WSROC president Tony Hadchiti

WSROC president Tony Hadchiti said Western Sydney residents are amongst Sydney’s biggest commuters, and on average have higher levels of car ownership than Greater Sydney as a whole.

It is therefore fitting that the Centre will be located in the region, Cr Hadchiti said.

“Western Sydney is home to six out of the state’s 10 most accident-prone LGAs according to the NSW Centre for Road Safety.

“So ensuring our roads are as safe as they can be is supremely important.

“Investment in road safety, exploration of new technology and better driver training is essential to ensuring we reduce the road toll in our state,” he said.

“Western Sydney is also at the forefront of many challenges relating to transport, infrastructure planning and congestion,” he said.

“Anyone who has recently visited Marsden Park, Newington or Leppington will have seen for themselves how rapidly Western Sydney is growing. You can watch whole new suburbs being built before your eyes.

“Ensuring the right transport links and infrastructure are in place to serve these emerging communities – including both private and public transport options – is crucial to the future liveability of our city.

[social_quote duplicate=”no” align=”default”]“WSROC also welcomes the centre as an employment hub offering local opportunities for Western Sydney’s leading thinkers in the science, IT and engineering space,” he said.[/social_quote]

“Location of employment opportunities in itself is a key factor influencing transport needs and congestion in Sydney, so we are proud to see the NSW Government leading by example.’’



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