GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Ford has picked Grand Rapids to launch a new vision for mobility, and city residents will be driving the effort.
It’s all part of the “City of Tomorrow Challenge,” which Ford and city leaders announced Wednesday morning.
Dell, Microsoft, AT&T, PlanetM and The Right Place will also be involved in the eight-month program, which taps the community for feedback about mobility issues and possible solutions. In the final stage, Ford will reward $100,000 to test out the top ideas as pilot programs.
Grand Rapids is one of only three cities involved in the challenge, joining the ranks of Pittsburgh and Miami-Dade.
Trevor Paul from Michigan’s mobility group, PlanetM, says Ford had many options.
“They could have gone out West. But it didn’t take too long to realize that they only needed to drive two-and-a-half hours west to West Michigan, to the city of Grand Rapids,” said Paul. “That’s because Grand Rapids has a true appreciation and commitment for great design. It’s in your DNA — you’ve been doing it for decades, you’ve been transforming people’s daily lives for decades. Whether it’s the carpet sweeper, the office chair, public funded art installations.”