Pitch and Pilot: Fairfax County Innovation Challenge

Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety

Wednesday, April 21

Register to Attend

Goal: To find innovative solutions to improve pedestrian and bicycle safety in our increasingly multimodal  transportation landscape.

Fairfax County Innovation Challenge Finalists

Boulder Ai + AMAG


Transoft Solutions

Street Simplified

Ford Safety Insights



1pm Welcome and Kickoff – Eta Nahapetian (Fairfax Co) and Carola Mandelbaum (Smart City Works)

1:10pm Opening Remarks – Chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Jeff McKay

1:10- 1:30 – Panel Discussion with Rachel Flynn (Deputy Co Executive at Fairfax Co) and Bruce Wright (Fairfax Alliance for Better Bicycling), moderated by David Ihrie (CIT)

1:30-2:30 – Pitch Competition

2:30-2:40 – Judges’ deliberation and Networking session

2:40-3pm – Judges’ comment/announcement/closing

Confirmed Judges

Eric Teitelman

Capital Projects and Traffic Engineering Division Chief, Fairfax County Department of Transportation

Yvette White

Board member, Fairfax Alliance for Better Bicycling

Heidi Mitter

Transportation Planning Specialist at Virginia Department of Transportation

Michael Fontaine

Associate Director / Virginia Transportation Research Council

Lisa Brown

Senior Director, Local Government – Global Markets, Johnson Controls


The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors has made bicycle and pedestrian safety a priority by allocating significant federal, state and local funding to implement bicycle and pedestrian safety improvements in high-risk areas. The coronavirus pandemic has substantially altered how people travel and use various transportation modes. While transit ridership is slowly recovering, bike sales have doubled nationally. The pandemic has also significantly reduced road congestion, and travel speeds have increased as a result. At the same time, crashes involving vulnerable road users who are disproportionally people of color and low income, have also increased.

As localities look to respond to these rapid mode shifts and protect vulnerable road users, Fairfax County, in partnership with Smart City Works, proposes to hold an innovation challenge event that focuses on bicycle and pedestrian safety. This event aims to find the best ideas and solutions to improve safety for vulnerable road users. The county hopes to implement a pilot project to evaluate the effectiveness of the winning solution(s).

Bike sales have doubled nationally.


Road congestion has been reduced, but travel speeds have increased.

Crash victims are disproportionately people of color and low income.

About the Competition

In partnership with Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives, Smart City Works will hold a regionally focused virtual Pitch and Pilot to find the best safety solutions to support Fairfax County’s goals, including increasing bike and pedestrian safety, promoting active living, and sustainability.  Fairfax County hopes this process will result in a viable pilot project. The County is agreeable to partnering with participants who offer innovative safety solutions that are aligned with County goals and policies.  There are no preconceived notions about the incorporation of any specific technologies, but we do ask that the solution further the County’s goal of being a leader in smart community innovation.

At least eight teams from around the world will virtually present their solutions to an audience of Fairfax government officials and other safety, innovation, and community stakeholders from around the region.


The winning proposal will:

  • align with both the County’s and VDOT’s guiding principles or goals;
  • align with the One Fairfax Policy to advance racial and social equity;
  • incorporate existing crash and safety data;
  • address safety challenges at a specific geographic location(s);
  • use an innovative approach to advance County priorities;
  • prioritize vulnerable populations and disadvantaged communities;
  • maintain data privacy and security; and
  • have the potential to scale.

The winning solution will be considered for implementation as a pilot project in Fairfax County.


Companies, entities, or teams of all sizes and from all over the world may submit a proposal. 

Participants must:

  • incorporate an existing or future technology product or program; and
  • be able to implement the solution within a year.



A selection committee will evaluate and score proposals and select finalists. The selection and evaluation process will be based on the criteria identified below:

  • Innovation
  • Scalability
  • Practicality of application
  • Safety
  • Equity and Inclusivity

For any questions, contact us at fairfaxinnovation2021@gmail.com