TORONTO – Today, Ecopia AI (Ecopia) announced that it is creating a high-definition (HD) map for the City of Toronto that will be leveraged to accelerate the deployment of Autonomous Vehicles (AVs). This initiative strives to lay the foundation for a digital twin of the city of Toronto and is being made possible with the support of Ontario's Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN). This HD Map of Canada's largest city will serve as a test-bed for AV applications and puts Ontario at the forefront of next-generation transportation systems.
Through AVIN, Ecopia received $994,706 from the Government of Ontario to match an industry contribution of $2,039,561 to develop the technology related to this initiative in partnership with the City of Toronto.
As we race towards an autonomous future, there is a critical need for the creation of new underlying digital infrastructure. To serve this need, Ecopia is commercializing a centralized hub for the HD Map data needed in the enablement of AV and smart city applications. The embedded HD Maps will be generated through the use of Ecopia's proprietary artificial intelligence (AI) powered systems, which mine geospatial data such as aerial and street-view imagery, to generate a highly detailed digital representation of the physical world. These HD maps will include detailed road networks, pedestrian networks, and other land cover features such as 3D buildings – all of which will be available for license through the platform and a series of application programming interfaces (APIs).
Ecopia is excited to support the growth and development of autonomous vehicle and smart city applications through our HD Map platform, said Jon Lipinski, Ecopia's Co-Founder & President. We're thankful to the Ontario Government, AVIN, and the City of Toronto for their partnership in this endeavour – which has far-reaching implications not only for the city and province but across all of Canada as we look towards the future of transportation.
The project highlights Ontario's strengths in artificial intelligence, mobility technologies, and effective collaboration between industry and government, said Vic Fedeli, Ontario Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. Through initiatives like the Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network, the province is working with our ambitious tech companies and dynamic communities to foster an Autotech ecosystem that positions Ontario to lead in developing and building the vehicles of the future.
Through pilot programs for testing automated vehicles on Ontario roads, and investments into innovative projects like this initiative by Ecopia, Ontario has established itself as a global leader in the connected and automated vehicle industry, said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. Autonomous vehicles have the potential to make transportation more efficient, safe, and environmentally friendly. Our government is proud to support Ontario-based businesses working to make a more connected and convenient transportation system a reality.
The development of a high definition map of Toronto is a key milestone in our Autonomous Vehicle Tactical Plan, and Ecopia's efforts will help drive us towards that future. This initiative is a great example of Toronto’s robust innovation ecosystem and our ability to foster public and private partnerships that help us achieve common goals and a vision for a healthy, equitable, liveable and sustainable city, said John Tory, Mayor of the City of Toronto.
About Ecopia AI
Ecopia leverages AI to convert high-resolution images of our earth into high-definition (HD) Vector Maps. These maps form a digital representation of reality and are embedded into critical decision-making applications, offering unique insight at scale. Ecopia's HD Vector Maps are leveraged for hundreds of commercial and government applications across over 100 countries around the world. For more information, visit www.ecopia.ai
Ontario's Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN) is an initiative of the Government of Ontario, led by the Ontario Centre of Innovation (OCI), designed to reinforce Ontario's position as a North American leader in transportation technology and infrastructure systems. Through resources such as research and development (R&D) support, talent development, technology acceleration, business and technical supports, and demonstration grounds, AVIN provides a competitive advantage to Ontario-based automotive and mobility technology companies.
Ontario's 2021 Budget announced further support for the auto sector by investing $56.4 million over the next four years to build on the successful elements of AVIN and create the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN). OVIN's expanded mandate will help foster the next generation of electric, connected, and autonomous vehicle and mobility technologies in Ontario.