Securing America's Future Energy

Live at SXSW: Electrification Coalition Applauds Seven Finalist Cities Selected by U.S. Department of Transportation for Smart City Challenge

Contact: Ellen Carey
Number: 202-461-2382
Each finalist will receive $100,000 to further develop its proposal to remake urban transportation, eligible for up to $40 million from DOT and up to $10 million from Paul Allen’s Vulcan, Inc.

Austin, Texas – The Electrification Coalition (EC) offered its congratulations to the seven finalist cities selected for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Smart City Challenge at South by Southwest on Saturday. The proposals submitted by these candidate communities are emblematic of the will and motivation necessary to tackle America’s outdated transportation system and revolutionize the future of mobility. Each finalist will receive $100,000 to develop its plans in greater detail, and the winning city will be awarded up to $40 million from DOT to implement the bold, data-driven ideas needed to make transportation safer, easier, and more reliable. DOT has teamed up with Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Inc., for the challenge, which plans to award up to $10 million to the winning city to support electric vehicle deployment.

Chosen from an initial 78 submitted proposals, the finalist cities are:

  • Austin, Texas
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Kansas City, Missouri
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Portland, Oregon
  • San Francisco, California

These communities vary in size and geography and represent leaders and citizens ready to spearhead the future of transportation and reduce congestion, improve efficiency, expand mobility, and accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles, all while making America’s cities cleaner places to live and work and reducing the country’s dependence on oil.

“With DOT announcing seven finalists for the Smart City Challenge, the Electrification Coalition is excited to see how these top-notch applicants will further develop their proposals to reshape urban transportation,” said EC President and CEO Robbie Diamond. “This country is desperate for innovation and 21st-century transportation solutions like electric and self-driving cars, both of which stand to drastically reduce America’s dependence on oil and help us become more economically competitive while improving our national security. Cities have always been this country’s greatest centers for innovation, and we are grateful to see them leading the charge in this critical area.”

As Vulcan’s implementation partner in the Smart City Challenge, the Electrification Coalition brings its expertise in creating and managing comprehensive “deployment communities,” including the pioneering Drive Electric Orlando and Drive Electric Northern Colorado projects, to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles. In the public sector, the EC collaborates with mayors and city managers to transition municipal fleets away from petroleum fuels through the Energy Secure Cities Coalition.

The EC looks forward to working with Vulcan to engage with the Smart City Challenge’s finalists to help them further develop their proposals, and to working with the Challenge winner as it redefines the concept of mobility within its city limits.

To learn more about the EC and its current initiatives, visit, and


About the Electrification Coalition
The Electrification Coalition is a nonpartisan, non-profit group of business leaders committed to promoting policies and actions that reduce America’s dependence on oil by facilitating the deployment of electric vehicles on a mass scale. The members of the Electrification Coalition are leaders of companies representing the entire value chain of an electrified transportation system.



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