MetroLab Network Taps City Of Chattanooga And UTC

Friday, September 15, 2017

The city of Chattanooga and UTC have been selected to be members of the MetroLab Network, a national network comprised of 35 city-university partnerships focused on bringing data, analytics, and innovation to city government. Before being accepted into MetroLab, research institutions and related cities making significant strides in smart city initiatives are reviewed by a committee of civic leaders and urban science researchers. The Chattanooga/UTC membership will be announced this fall at MetroLab’s annual summit hosted this year by Georgia Tech and the city of Atlanta.  

Founded in 2015 with a $1 million MacArthur grant to Carnegie Mellon University and the city of Pittsburg, MetroLab Network serves as a catalyst for collaboration on projects such as creating the most advanced modeling applications for planners and developers to determine building energy efficiency methodologies, analytics that predict likely fire outbreaks and real time multimodal transportation applications. Chattanooga and UTC are now listed alongside city-university partnerships like South Bend and University of Notre Dame and the city of Chicago in partnership with The University of Chicago.   

MetroLab Network’s executive director Ben Levine explained Chattanooga and UTC’s selection as a result of “the coordinated work apparent with the university’s National Science Foundation research projects that are working directly in the community on improving urban systems.”  

“Chattanooga’s city officials and researchers have already rolled up their sleeves to figure out how to work together towards finding the most informed solutions possible to specific challenges."   

Mayor Andy Berke attributed the new recognition to the momentum at the city and UTC the past few years in working across multiple disciplines to achieve innovation milestones.

“Chattanooga is a city where you can see the technology of tomorrow," said Mayor Berke.  "Through partnerships like UTC, we are cultivating the talent and innovation to address the challenges that keep our city from being an equitable, authentic, and inclusive community.” 

Chancellor Steve Angle of UTC said that, “this type of coordinated partnership between UTC and the city of Chattanooga has extensive, long term gains for everyone. We are thrilled that more UTC researchers will have broader opportunities to collaborate with our city and a range of leading universities engaged in the Smart City space.”  

Mayor Berke also added, “We look forward to the outcomes of these Smart City partnerships. This framework will help build a stronger, more effective Chattanooga by using innovation to improve lives in our community."

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