The U.S. Department of Transportation announced that the city of Columbus is the winner of its national Smart City Challenge and will receive $50 million in grant funding to support intelligent transportation system development. According to the Columbus Dispatch, the grant will “turn Columbus into a test track for transportation technology” that will “reduce congestion and improve the environmental effects of travel.” Columbus indicated in its application that the city would use the grant to, among other things, support “an autonomous vehicle test fleet at Easton Town Center” and“create a transit pass payment system that would be used for multiple forms of transportation,” according to this Columbus Dispatch article. Local businesses have pledged $90 million to support the effort. Columbus beat out Austin, Denver, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Portland and San Francisco to win the national competition.

For more information, read Columbus Business First’s coverage.