ORIGINAL ARTICLE, Takara Small, canadianbusiness.com, Feb. 7, 2022
Canadian municipalities have it rough budget-wise. The steady downloading of expenses from provincial and federal governments has been straining essential services like road repairs, garbage collection and general maintenance for years. The COVID-19 pandemic, and the attendant revenue hits to tourism, transit, taxes and more, made a challenging situation much more acute. There’s just no easy solution for cities and towns charged with maintaining and repairing aging infrastructure. Enter Iris R&D Group. The company, which launched in 2018, has developed data-driven software to help cities spot and fix infrastructure issues in real-time.
Here’s how it works: Iris attaches mobile dash cams to vehicles in municipal fleets—everything from maintenance trucks to buses. The cams, powered by encrypted Iris software, are calibrated to spot and report problems. For instance, if a garbage truck with a cam passes a damaged bus shelter, the software can automatically identify the structural problem, tag the date and location of the images and share that information with the teams responsible for triaging and executing repairs. To date, Iris’s technology has been deployed in several municipalities, including the Ontario cities of Vaughan and London; the goal is to eventually expand around the world.
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