NEWS - 2022/04/26

City RAPTOR – A Strategic Alliance Between Barcelona and Tel Aviv to Address Traffic Congestion

CARNET has built a strategic alliance with Tel Aviv and CityZone to facilitate agile innovation in cities and address current issues in the complex area of urban mobility. This collaboration starts with the launch of the Rapid Applications for Transport (RAPTOR) project, set for May 2022. RAPTOR is a competition funded by EIT Urban Mobility that seeks to create and test solutions to niche urban mobility challenges, where participants compete to provide the most innovative, feasible, and impactful solutions.

The main objective of the RAPTOR project is to address traffic congestion, a problem that costs the Israeli economy more than $10 billion annually, according to its government officials. Therefore, in order to address the private vehicle dependency and pollution in Tel Aviv, several sub-challenges should be dealt with to improve citizen perception of alternative Urban Mobility solutions. The challenges submitted in the project proposal will address several needs that complement each other: reduction of micromobility theft, pedestrian safety, efficiency of logistics and increase of public transport reliability.

The RAPTOR – TLV project will have a duration of 8 months and will be financed by the EIT Urban Mobility. The selected start-up/SMEs that will be developing their solution during the programme will be ready to pilot test their Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for the specific challenge that they are addressing by November 2022. Depending on each solution, the pilots will have different durations, all of them with a minimum of 2 weeks.

The challenges selected by the Tel Aviv Municipality are universal and touch upon problems many cities in Europe are experiencing. A successful solution applied and verified in Tel Aviv can be easily applied to any region in Europe. For the Israeli dynamic innovation ecosystem, the opportunity to accelerate the development of their solutions with a European mindset and vision is a highlight of this programme and will be one of the main selling points. From the European point of view, benefits come from engaging one of the most active innovation ecosystems and diverse start-ups portfolio in this agile innovation programme, which will bring it close to the EU cities’ needs. In addition, the accessibility to investment opportunities within the Israel ecosystem outgrows the usual ratio in EU countries, which benefits the impact of RAPTOR TLV programme.

CARNET will participate in the process of designing challenge solutions by providing insights brought forth by European experts. On the other hand, CityZone, being the innovation programme of the city of Tel Aviv, represents city innovation at its core and understands how an innovation programme lead by a city should run in order to be successful. It seeks scalable solutions in all the innovation programmes that it is leading. The idea is that the products that are accelerated and co-designed in their open innovation lab can enter the market swiftly. In this sense, the successful solutions developed within the project and resulting SMEs could be incorporated into the city gradually, thanks to the co-designing strategy of the programme.

Within the project, CARNET and CityZone will be working together to combine both partners’ expertise. CityZone is an Urban Tech Living Lab and Open Innovation Programme, founded by Tel Aviv municipality, Tel Aviv University and Atidim Business Park, in order to absorb the rapid evolution of disruptive technologies for urban areas. Through the work of partners based in Spain and Israel, the project will be able to add value to the whole innovation ecosystem within EU and its associated countries.