State Releases GenAI Solicitations on Roadway Safety and Mobility Insights

Published On: January 5, 2024

The California Departments of Technology and General Services, on behalf of Caltrans, on Thursday released two Requests for Innovative Ideas, also known as RFI2, for generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) solutions to address transportation-related problems.  The solicitations are part of Governor Newsom’s executive order to explore GenAI in state government, announced in September.

“The Request for Innovative Ideas (RFI 2) is a competitive procurement approach that seeks to engage innovators, entrepreneurs, scientists, vendors, and experts to collaborate on designing leading-edge solutions,” says the project introduction. “Instead of asking for a particular product, the State is identifying the problem and seeking solutions to yield comprehensive and effective results.”

The RFI2 process involves single a competitive procurement with two phases that include a conference and concept paper, and proof of concept with a working solution in a “sandbox” that can be tested by the Department of Technology.

RFI2 – Request for Innovative Ideas – GenAI Solution for Vulnerable Roadway User (VRU) Safety

The initiative is addressing the rise in traffic fatalities, especially among pedestrians, cyclists, and scooter riders. The proposed GenAI tool aims to predict and mitigate high-risk areas through comprehensive data collection and analysis of roadway geometry, traffic behaviors, and other variables.

The project aims to proactively identify and address safety issues, contrasting the traditional reactive methods. Objectives include identifying high-risk locations, recommending safety strategies, and prioritizing infrastructure improvements, particularly in underserved communities. The solution must be scalable, continuously improve with data influx, and adhere to the California Department of Technology’s managed cloud environments, among other security and operational requirements.

The initiative represents a significant shift toward using advanced technology to enhance road safety and set a new standard in proactive traffic management and safety interventions. If successful, it promises a substantial reduction in road fatalities and injuries.

RFI2 – Request for Innovative Ideas – GenAI Solutions for Traffic Mobility Insights

The proposal is seeking innovative solutions to tackle traffic congestion and optimize infrastructure through the implementation of a pre-trained generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) system. California’s extensive transportation network, serving over 39 million residents, is vital for its economy and agriculture, says the proposal.

The GenAI project’s primary aim is to utilize data from various sensors, including numerical data, text, images, and videos, to generate actionable insights and enhance traffic analysis. The data presents challenges due to its volume, diversity, and the need to account for climate change and traffic disruptions.

The project aims to revolutionize the state’s transportation system by improving traffic operations and decision-making. Key objectives include ensuring compliance with regulations, streamlining data processing, recognizing real-time traffic patterns, enhancing safety, and implementing predictive analytics for incidents. It also aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, support freight mobility, invest in digital infrastructure, create user-friendly GenAI tools, and analyze multimodal transportation data.

Respondents must provide a pre-trained GenAI solution that integrates with California’s Department of Technology’s managed cloud environments and adhere to security guidelines, including data pre-processing and monitoring.

The two solicitations are the first among several forthcoming RFI2 solicitations related to GenAI, according to State CIO Liana Bailey-Crimmins who announced the series at a vendor forum on December 14.

The deadline for both solicitations is January 25 at 5 pm.

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