The Italian start-up Wise Air (www.wiseair.vision), a former ASP project (14th cycle), has started a collaboration with ARPA in order to collect data on pollution in cities.
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“If one of the three largest startup accelerators in the world chooses Turin as Europe’s smart mobility hub, there must be a reason. The American Techstars launched the Smart Mobility Accelerator last year, in collaboration with the city administration and Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center. “Turin has accepted the challenge: from being the capital of the automobile, we want to become the capital of the mobility of the future, which can also be far from automotive,” comments Marco Pironti, councillor for Innovation, smart city and recovery of the City of Turin.
Pironti is giving concrete form to the project, with initiatives launched in collaboration with some of the 12 selected startups. Among these, for example, the English Imperium drive is about to launch a trial with the Stellantis group for autonomous driving vehicles and another with the Politecnico di Torino, 5T and Tim to test the technology in certain locations in the city covered by 4G and 5G connectivity.
Italy’s Wise Air, which operates in data collection to support air quality, has partnered with Arpa to collect and validate city pollution data through low-cost sensors. Contextually, Wise air’s platform will collect data through satellite technology and the use of drones: it wants to provide citizens with a simple and digital pollution data reading system.
Finally, Latitudo 40 is developing an experiment for the satellite mapping of Turin’s flat roofs with the aim of converting them into “green roofs” also intended for the installation of photovoltaic panels. Latitudo 40’s technology will also make it possible to monitor the state of river beds and their evolution over time, as well as the boundaries of hillside forests, and the detection of asbestos residues via satellite.
“Our Innovation Center and Techstars are working with Torino City Lab – says Maurizio Montagnese, president of Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation center -. The goal is to support the development of the local innovation ecosystem. We promote experimentation between the startups involved and the partners of Torino City Lab, taking advantage of the test areas and infrastructures made available by the City. We hope that these companies will remain on the territory and, in addition to providing solutions for smart mobility and export them elsewhere, will bring new jobs”.
Among the other startups selected by Techstars, some, such as Cargofive, aim to make the transport of goods more sustainable and efficient; others, such as Duet, facilitate the management of company fleets; and still others, such as Blink and Deliverart, offer innovative solutions for home deliveries. The second, for example, is Italian and aggregates in a single interface the main food delivery platforms on the market today, optimizing orders and times.
“The administration,” says Pironti, “intercepts issues like, ‘Turin is one of the European cities with the highest rate of urban fatalities.’ And it looks for partners with whom to solve the problems, we try to build the conditions so that they can do it in the best way. Because of Covid many myths have been dismantled: American investors and accelerators have realized that we have brilliant ideas and minds here and that they “cost” less. This is why they are starting to come here to look for innovation”.
Each territory, according to the councillor, must concentrate resources on what it specializes in and leave the rest alone: “For example, Milan on fintech, Turin on mobility”. Stopping to think of the latter as simply the production of vehicles. “We are studying how to implement aerial deliveries with drones – says Pironti -. It is not a problem of technologies, but of laws. We’re experimenting with aerial routes over city waterways to start using them.”
Cimpanelli, Giulia (2021, May 10), Torino, 12 startup per scommettere sulla mobilità del futuro, Corriere della Sera, L’Economia, p. 16