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Winners announced for inaugural SmartRail USA Innovation Awards.

Posted by SmartRail World Staff on Jul 29, 2015

SmartRail Innovation Awards WinnersThe votes have all been counted and the winners of the inaugural SmartRail USA Innovation Awards 2015 have been confirmed. After a three month process this nationwide search for the most innovative new products and solutions for the transit (rail, metro and bus) industry in North America we finally have our winners. Both of whom will receive their awards at SmartRail USA Congress & Expo in Charlotte on October 28th. So who has won what? And who came in as runners up and highly commended after our panel of judges voted?

Bombardier took the Product of the Year title with their YardSafe state-of-the-art engineered safety solution which provides improved location awareness for workers in rail yards and maintenance facilities.

Speaking on the confirmation of their win Mark Willer, Product Manager, Technology Systems at Bombardier; "We are extremely pleased to have been selected by the SmartRail judging panel as the winning entry for Product of The Year for 2015. Bombardier’s Technology Solutions team is dedicated to developing and delivering systems that add real value and improve safety in the rail transit industry. We believe this award is a reflection of our team’s vision for the innovative application of technology and our commitment to achieving these goals.”

“We would also like to recognize our colleagues in Bombardier that supported UP Express. Our team of Train Operating Crews, Guest Service Representatives and Maintenance teams along with their related management teams are thrilled to be a part of and to deliver such a world class link between Pearson Airport and Toronto’s downtown core” added Mark.

The Project of the Year title was secured by Los Angeles County Metropolitan Authority (LA Metro) with their new intelligence based surveillance system being implemented as part of a 30 year rail transit expansion.

Al Martinez, Director, Information Management at Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority on winning the award: “We are excited to receive the Project of the Year Award from SmartRail USA. LA Metro is working hard to research new and innovative tools that will improve the customer experience as well as safety for the transit riders of Los Angeles.  We believe implementing this new intelligence based surveillance system on our rail fleet will move us closer to this goal.  We are grateful for recognizing LA Metro’s efforts with this award.”

One of the panel of judges Jim Allison, Planning Manager, Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA) on the final voting; “It’s a testament to the industry that there were so many high quality entrants across a wide variety of diversity of applications. It was not easy to pick the most transformational projects.”

Whilst another judge, Paul C Worley, Rail Division Director, North Carolina Department of Transportation added; "I enjoyed being a part of Smart Rail’s competition for new technology in the rail industry. It was very interesting and rewarding to review the various new approaches to making rail operations safer and more efficient."

The winners will receive their awards at a ceremony at SmartRail USA Congress and Expo in Charlotte, North Carolina 28-29th October 2015. SmartRail USA is the only show dedicated to driving innovation in passenger rail in North America and is free to attend.

SmartRail USA Congress and Expo 2015

Award Details

Product of the Yearidentifies the best and most innovative products in the rail industry. Hardware or software, it can be a new product, an update of an existing solution or an improved way of utilising current technology that will improve our industry. The focus can be large or small but the product and the improvement it makes is the important factor. Open to entrants from solution providers and individuals.


BOMBARDIER (YardSafe™ – Innovation in improving Safety and Effectiveness within Rail Yards)


DIVVALI LED (LED Locomotive Lamps)


RADWIN (FiberinMotion Train-to-Ground Solution)

MOOVIT (Your City, Your Local Transit App)

ONE BUS AWAY (The Open Source platform for Real Time Transit Info)


Project of the Year – recognizes new developments and ways of thinking in improving and increasing efficiency in rail project delivery and management. With a particular focus on projects that have helped deliver a safer, more reliable transit network, increased capacity, boosted ridership or improved passenger experience. We welcome entrants from transit agencies as well as solutions providers.


LA METRO (Metro Rail Intelligence Based Surveillance System)


AMTRAK (Next-generation wireless communications project)


UP EXPRESS (An Integrated Transit Solution for Toronto)


The Judging Panel

  • Robert Stewart, Chairman, National Association of Railroad Passengers (NARP)
  • Paul C Worley, Rail Division Director, North Carolina Department of Transportation
  • Jim Allison, Planning Manager, Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority (CCJPA)
  • Alan F. Tilles, Attorney, Shulman Rogers
  • Dr. Kenneth Gilbert, Professor Emeritus, University of Tennessee
  • Luke Upton, Editor, SmartRail World


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