Smart mobility and rideshare focus of international transportation conference

Like all major cities around the world, Calgary is looking toward the future by making decisions around smart mobility as our city grows and environmental issues drive decision making. How can we use technology to solve transportation problems Calgary faces? Where can we look to for innovative ideas and solutions?

These questions and more will be open for discussion at the International Association of Transportation Regulators (IATR) 32 Annual Conference from September 22 to 25 at the Fairmont Palliser Hotel. The theme for 2019 is Regulatory Round-Up and the conference will explore innovative ideas for mobility, discuss effective policy making and look at industry disruptors and the impact on customer safety, equity and accessibility. Councillor Diane Colley-Urquhart will provide opening remarks welcoming delegates to Calgary and the conference.

Livery Transport Services regulates the taxi, rideshare and limousine sectors to ensure customer and driver safety. Abdul Rafih, chief livery inspector for The City says this conference is of interest to anyone in the transportation sector or sectors that support transportation, including the tech industry, law, urban planning and engineering. The 3rd Annual Transportation Boot Camp 3.0 also provides continuing education credits for lawyers, urban planner and engineers.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for professionals and students involved in sectors that provide transportation and mobility services, or who support these sectors, to join the conversations and network with delegates from around the globe,” says Rafih. “This conference only comes to Canada once every three years, so now is the time to find out more about the IATR and how this organization can support local innovation.”

Plans are underway to expand Calgary’s C-Train system with the Green Line. The first phase is scheduled for completion in 2024.Calgary is facing challenges like congestion, reducing our transportation carbon footprint and a future with autonomous vehicles. This conference will help address these challenges with the 4th Annual Hack-A-Thon competition tackling Smart City Mobility.

Rafih says the hack-a-thon is an exciting opportunity and a key offering for the host city. The competition happens during the Spring 2019 academic calendar and is open to students, professors, private companies and non-profit interest groups, among others. Competitors accessed public and private data sets, supplied by The City of Calgary, through the IATR Data Commons at the University of California, Berkley. The winning entrants will present their solution at the conference and receive a $5,000 cash award.

“The competitors basically take the data apart, look at it in different ways and use it to come up with innovative solutions. Since competitors can come from anywhere, it’s like getting free consulting from some of the brightest minds across North America and around the world.”

In addition to the Smart City Mobility Hack-A-Thon, conference sessions explore topics like:

  • a panel of next generation professionals working on mobility options;

  • capping for-hire vehicles as a solution to congestion;

  • unionization of drivers in the gig economy; and

  • urban nightlife district issues and multi-model solutions for safe, efficient transport.

For more information on the conference, visit or call 311 and ask to speak to someone in Livery Transport Services.