The Urban Freight Lab (UFL) is hosting its third annual Tech Day: Transforming the Final 50 Feet of Delivery, a pitch competition for innovators improving the last leg of the urban goods delivery system, also known as the final 50 feet. That stretch begins at the load/unload space located at the curb, in an alley or a private loading bay; and follows delivery operators as they maneuver sidewalks, intersections and security in buildings; and ends when the customer receives their goods.
Four finalists will be selected to pitch their solutions on December 10, 2019 to Urban Freight Lab members (retailers, freight carriers, University of Washington researchers and the Seattle Department of Transportation) and a panel of venture capitalists. Contestants may also be chosen for a pilot project.
The lab is seeking solutions to the following problems:
1. Reducing parking-seeking behavior in dense urban areas
2. Improving commercial vehicle parking space productivity
3. Reducing the number of failed first deliveries
4. Reducing dwell time for delivery vehicles
Housed in the University of Washington Supply Chain Transportation and Logistics Center, the freight lab brings together retailers, manufacturers, logistics companies and city agencies to address the final 50 foot challenge.
Current UFL projects include a plan to locate common delivery lockers next to transit stops in the central city starting January 1, 2020. The pilot expands on an earlier initiative demonstrating reduced delivery times after similar lockers were installed in city skyscrapers.
Another initiative aims to reduce the amount of time delivery truck drivers spend looking for parking. With help from a $1.5 million federal grant, the team is placing sensors in load/unload spaces in an eight-block downtown area and analyzing the data in real time.
To submit Tech Day proposals click here. Proposals are due August 15th, 2019.