Hackathon looks for ways to get solo drivers into new travel behaviours


The NZ Transport Agency’s third hackathon this weekend will challenge volunteers to unleash the potential of technology to increase travel options and change travel behaviours in New Zealand cities.

“We’re looking for innovative solutions to travel demand issues” says Leigh Mitchell, co-sponsor of the Transport Agency’s Travel Demand Management Programme.

“We need to encourage people to make travel choices that will reduce the number of single-occupancy cars on our roads.”

The mode+alt+shift Hackathon is an innovation initiative by the Transport Agency, with 120 volunteers from diverse backgrounds working in teams for 48 hours to apply fresh and creative thinking to a difficult transport issue.

“Hackathons are an innovation platform for the Transport Agency, where we can collaborate with our customers and surface new ideas to tackle the systemic challenges we’re facing,” says the Transport Agency’s Director of Connected Journey Solutions, Martin McMullan.

“The Hackathon will ignite and forge innovation that will feed into the Agency’s thinking about how it can cater to customers’ ever evolving and shifting expectations of travel.”

“Ultimately, the aim is to bring together people, promote collaboration and give them the space and support to hack how to increase vehicle occupancy in our cities.”
“It’s about technology unlocking travel choices – moving people, not machines.”

Organisers will be hoping to replicate the success of their September hackathon where the winners have gone on to sell their concept to a commercial company. It means the ParkRite concept for addressing the abuse of disability parking spaces will be piloted and tested this year.

Note to editors:

You are invited to the Pitch Showcase on Sunday 17 March, 2pm - 4pm

Come and see the mode+alt+shift teams pitch their ideas to the judges.
Participants usually form groups of around six to eight individuals, identify problems and generate solutions to a fleshed out concept, mock-up or prototyping stage. Teams are encouraged to take a customer-centric approach. They don’t have to be a ‘hacker’, a programmer or a tech-lover to take part – all skill-sets are valuable.

Prizegiving is at 4:30pm.
NZ Transport Agency Innovation Zone, 105 Cook Street, Auckland 1010