Congratulations to Kaizen Health The winner of the Grand Rapids City of Tomorrow Challenge! It is amazing to see this winner after reading through so many great ideas and strong submissions. The $100K prize will go towards bringing Kaizen’s proposal goal of “eliminating transportation as a barrier to good medical care”.
Kaizen Health is an early stage health technology company working to modernize and streamline access to transportation in partnership with providers, payers, self-insured employers and municipalities. The team is passionate about pursuing creative ways to deploy its technology and vehicle network to reduce unnecessary costs in health care and help people live healthier, happier lives. In Grand Rapids, the group has proposed a pilot that integrates existing services from Lyft, GO!Bus, The Rapid call center and Innova EV’s first- and last-mile vehicles to allow Grand Rapids residents to make independent decisions about their mobility options.
“This proposal stems directly from the experiences of Grand Rapids residents and the obstacles they face on a daily basis,” said John Kwant, vice president of Ford City Solutions. “Listening to the community, collaborating with residents and bringing them into the design process is a new and novel approach to developing mobility solutions, and it’s exactly the kind of local engagement we wanted to foster with the City of Tomorrow Challenge.”
Mobile GR and the City of Grand rapids have been working closely with the Challenge team this whole time and really helped bring this great idea to the forefront. “This has been a great partnership with Ford to engage our community in the future of mobility in Grand Rapids,” said Josh Naramore, Mobile GR-Parking Services manager. “The stories and experiences we have heard from residents and other community stakeholders through this process are guiding our work to make sure this is an accessible city for everyone.”
Working together is really the only way we will get to a solution that solves the broadest set of problems. In this day in age things are changing rapidly so we must be nimble and aware of what is changing and what people’s needs are. Through all he experiences and ideas put forth the Challenge team, Mobile GR, and the City of Grand Rapids as a whole were able to identify the best ideas with Kaizen rising to the top.
“Dynamic mobility solutions are the foundation for our future cities,” said Amanda Roraff, operations manager of PlanetM, a mobility-focused brand and business development program at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “The practical solution unveiled today will have an immediate, positive impact on real transportation challenges facing city residents. This pilot project puts Grand Rapids at the forefront of the mobility revolution, and we’re excited to welcome this solution to Michigan’s mobility ecosystem.”
Kaizen will be looking to launch their pilot soon and the Challenge team will provide updates on progress and learnings. Follow us on Twitter to stay up to date.