Electric (Green) City: Peterborough's 7,205 Streetlights Are Going LED

 Most of the lights on Brealey have already been converted. Photo: Evan Holt

Most of the lights on Brealey have already been converted. Photo: Evan Holt

Work has begun to convert the city’s 7,205 streetlights to Smart technology Light Emitting Diode (LED) streetlight fixtures, which will reduce energy use, electricity costs and maintenance costs.

The impact will be as follows…

  • Energy costs reduced by 54%

  • Maintenance costs reduced by 80%

  • Reduced light pollution (the LED fixtures are “Dark Sky Compliant” as all light is directed downward)

  • Better light quality for pedestrians and vehicle traffic

 Each light is made up from numerous Light Emitting Diodes. Photo: Evan Holt

Each light is made up from numerous Light Emitting Diodes. Photo: Evan Holt

It’s estimated that the conversion to Smart technology LED fixtures will reduce annual electricity costs by 54 percent or by $650,000, and reduce maintenance costs by 80 percent or by $187,000.

The City expects to save an estimated 3,618,570 kilowatt-hours of energy per year, a 70 percent reduction compared to the current energy consumption for City streetlights. The reduction is the equivalent of the typical energy use by 375 homes for an entire year. The annual electricity cost is expected to be reduced to $552,800 from the $1.2 million for the existing streetlights, a savings of $650,000.

 The new LED lights will last up to four times longer than the previous High Pressure Sodium (HPS) streetlights which will be removed and recycled at qualified environmental disposal centers. Photo: Evan Holt

The new LED lights will last up to four times longer than the previous High Pressure Sodium (HPS) streetlights which will be removed and recycled at qualified environmental disposal centers. Photo: Evan Holt

LEDs will also help the City reduce maintenance costs by a projected 80 percent because LEDs are a solid-state technology (no moving parts) and last up to four times longer than the City’s existing streetlights.

Maintenance costs will be reduced to an estimated $46,700 a year from the current annual cost of approximately $233,700 for the traditional streetlights, a savings of $187,000.

 Photo by Evan Holt

Photo by Evan Holt

The level of lighting provided by the LED lights remains the same as previous lights. The difference is LED streetlights provide a safer light source with better visibility to both pedestrians and motorists. They offer better clarity and improve the ability to identify colours at night.

The LED Streetlight Conversion Project includes a change from a drop glass fixture to a flat glass fixture, which changes how light is distributed on the roadway and associated area. This change helps prevent light from spilling or dispersing onto adjacent spaces where it is not intended to be.

The new LED streetlights will be networked to automatically notify the City when there’s a light that’s out or malfunctioning, allowing the City to immediately schedule the work to fix the streetlight.

Work to convert all the lights is scheduled to be completed by December 31st.

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Trent University Is First Canadian Post-Secondary Institution To Green Light Digital Transit Passes

Kudos to Trent University, which has become the first Canadian post-secondary institution to green light digital transit passes.

The downloadable show ‘n go pass has eliminated thousands of plastic cards and yearly student lineups. The smart technology, ease and convenience, and the added benefits of a more sustainable option were key factors in Trent taking this initiative.

 Photo courtesy Trent University

Photo courtesy Trent University

This pilot project program is a collaboration between Trent University, the Trent Central Student Association (TCSA) and the City of Peterborough.

"Our new digital transit pass is an effort to keep transit service in the palm of student’s hands,” says Brandon Remmelgas, president of the TCSA. “Our goal is to prevent students from having to carry around a different card for each service they need to access, and it has the added bonus of reducing the number of plastic cards being printed on an annual basis.”

Since rolling out in September, more than 4,000 passes have been downloaded from the digital ID card app available on the Apple App Store or Google Play. Created by tech company ID 123, the passes are renewable online each year.

Click here to learn how to download the pass.

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PTBOCanada Featured Post: Learn About Innovation Cluster's CleanTech Program

PTBOCanada Featured Post: Learn About Innovation Cluster's CleanTech Program

Sponsored video post by Innovation Cluster

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Canada Learning Code Hosting Inclusive Workshop For Learning Code Basics At Innovation Cluster

The national not-for-profit Canada Learning Code is hosting an inclusive workshop "Ladies Learning Code: HTML & CSS for Beginners" for anyone to learn code. It will take place inside the Innovation Cluster’s awesome downtown incubator on Saturday, March 24th, from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

The mission of the workshop is to provide an inclusive opportunity for anyone to learn code, including beginner’s of coding, women, men and others who may often feel unwelcomed to enter the world of coding or are hesitant and intimidated to start. The workshops provide a social and collaborative environment while promoting careers in technology.

llcode volunteers and staff..jpg

The workshop will allow participants to learn HTML and CSS—an essential skill for web development to create marketing materials, company domains and blog sites.

Participants can expect to learn:

-> basic techniques and concepts that are translatable to other programming languages
-> building blocks of how HTML and CSS work together to create richer online experiences
-> how to create a rich website with images, video, and a CSS-defined layout
-> how to create a multi-page website
-> what resources are available if you’d like to continue learning at home.

Register here

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Entrepreneur Wins Cubs' Lair With Innovative Solution For First Nations To Obtain Tax Exemption

After six innovative pitches were made during the annual Cubs’ Lair competition Thursday night (November 30th) at the Gordon Best Theatre hosted by FastStart Peterborough, the Innovation Cluster and the Trent Youth Entrepreneurship Society, Rich Cochrane of Status Exempt was announced as the winner. His final prize package includes more than $14,000 to help push his startup.

Member of Curve Lake First Nation, Rich Cochrane started Status Exempt as a mission to make it easy for First Nations shoppers to buy online, tax exempt. Currently, First Nations online shoppers need to submit their receipts to the government for a tax refund, a process that can take up to 90 days—Cochrane’s innovative solution will reduce this to mere minutes.

 Left to right: Runner-up Sultan Moni of Zatiq; Winner Rich Cochrane of Status Exempt, Runner-up Victoria Naish of The Cake Engineer.

Left to right: Runner-up Sultan Moni of Zatiq; Winner Rich Cochrane of Status Exempt, Runner-up Victoria Naish of The Cake Engineer.

Currently working in the Cluster’s incubator building his business, Cochrane has been busy creating a platform for businesses and First Nations consumers to provide tax exemption in an easy way.

“Reconciliation is a hot topic in Canada right now,” says Cochrane. “A big component of reconciliation is building a stronger relationship between Indigenous Canadians and the rest of Canada and businesses will play a critical role in building that relationship.”

First Nations represent over three percent of Canada’s population and are also the fastest growing segment of the population with many living in remote or rural areas having no other option but to shop online. With this solution, Cochrane predicts that businesses will gain a large group of consumers.

Cochrane’s background includes being a banker in downtown Toronto, an analyst in the Aboriginal Banking unit at the Bank of Montreal, and graduating from the University of Windsor with a Bachelor of Commerce, specializing in Finance, Accounting and Entrepreneurship.

 Cubs' Lair finalists and judges (Photograph by Sofie Andreou)

Cubs' Lair finalists and judges (Photograph by Sofie Andreou)

Judges listened to pitches that included tech innovations for archaeology, real estate, energy saving and mobile apps, as well as a pitch for a cupcake bar service.

The two runners up of the competition are Sultan Moni of Zatiq and Victoria Naish of The Cake Engineer.

Rich Cochrane will now be able to push his startup with the grand prize package, which includes $3,000 cash from Ontario 150, extended incubator space at the Cluster, coaching and mentoring from established startups and more.

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350 Students From Across Canada To Attend Trent University’s 2nd Annual Hackathon

Electric City Hacks is back and bigger than ever. More than 350 post-secondary students from across the country, including students from local area high schools, are expected to attend Peterborough’s only hackathon, which will return to Trent University on November 3rd to 5th.
 
Founded in 2016 by four Trent University Computer Science and Information Systems students, Electric City Hacks or “ECHacks” offers post-secondary students the opportunity to put their coding knowledge to the test by creating an original hack, gadget or app from scratch in less than 37 hours.

 Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

This year’s hackathon will consist of multiple categories such as “Best Green Hack”, “Agriculture Hack”, “Adventure Hack” and more, to encourage participants to create with a specific purpose in mind. Prizes will be awarded to the top team in each category Sunday afternoon.

In between hacking, participants can also look forward to a morning hike around the Trent nature areas, campus tours and yoga classes, as well as a taste of Peterborough’s downtown with meals provided all weekend by local vendors and restaurants.

 Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

The Innovation Cluster is a sponsor this year:

“We are extremely excited to support the second annual Electric City Hacks at Trent University,” says Michael Skinner, President & CEO of the Innovation Cluster. “This hackathon will be a great opportunity for students to expose talent, grow, recruit and bring new innovative companies to Peterborough.”

 Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

Photo courtesy Innovation Cluster

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St. Patrick CES To Host Catholic Board Robotics Competition

Design, check. Coding, check. Math, check. Problem solving, check. Team work, check. Fun, check.

The annual Peterborough Victoria Northumberland and Clarington Catholic District School Board Robotics Competition at St. Patrick Catholic Elementary School in Peterborough will have it all as they host 16 teams from six schools on November 9th, competing in three robotics challenges from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 Photo from last year's competition

Photo from last year's competition

Participants will compete with Lego Mindstorms robots, which will be built before the competition, and students will be given time between competitions to upgrade robots as needed.

“This event inspires students to work together to solve problems in real time, while competing in a fun, good-spirited competition,” St. Patrick CES principal Karan Leal says. “Students design, program and code their own robots. They learn great STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) skills and we tend to get as many girls participating as boys, which is really promising to see.”

THE MAZE CHALLENGE

This challenge is to successfully finish the maze within two minutes. A robot must be able to navigate a maze from start to finish using either its touch or ultra-sensors. The winner will be the robot that makes it the farthest or finishes the maze the fastest.

THE HOCKEY CHALLENGE

Teams will create two robots that can move or hit a ball into a net. The robots will be run by a remote control. Teams will play against opponents in a round-robin format. The team that scores the most goals in the five-minute game will win. In the event of a tie, there will be a best-of-five shootout.

THE ROBOT CHALLENGE

Robots will fight for five minutes in a small arena. Robots can have any Lego battle attack strategies such as spinners, swinging arms, or shooting balls. Points will be awarded by the referee. The team wins by having the most points at the end of the five-minute match, by disabling the other robots, and/or by pushing the other robots out of the arena.

Check out this short video of last year’s Robotics Competition for a glimpse of all the excitement...

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PTBOCanada Featured Post: Learn About How The Innovation Cluster Is Having A Huge Impact With Startups

PTBOCanada Featured Post: Learn About How The Innovation Cluster Is Having A Huge Impact With Startups

Sponsored post by Innovation Cluster

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Ladies Learning Code’s National Learn To Code Day Being Hosted At Innovation Cluster’s Downtown Incubator

The Innovation Cluster - Peterborough and the Kawarthas will be hosting the Peterborough region of the annual National Learn to Code Day for women interested in coding at the downtown Cube for technology startups, on Saturday, September 23rd.

Presented by Ladies Learning Code, a Canada-wide not-for-profit organization that provides resources for women and children to learn skills in technology through a social and collaborative environment, this will give the opportunity for women to learn basic skills during Learn to Code Day.

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As a workshop that provides an inclusive experience to learn technological skills, Ladies Learning Code will present a beginner-friendly workshop to 30 women in the downtown Cube, as well as the same workshop being held in 29 cities across Canada.

The workshop is a public event open to any women wanting to learn or enhance their technological skills in coding and programming. Participants will gain skills and confidence while being educated in HTML, CSS, WordPress, Python, Ruby, web design and other skill-sets recommended to become digital creators.

 National Girls Learning Code Day

National Girls Learning Code Day

The Innovation Cluster partnered with Ladies Learning Code in May to host National Girls Learning Code Day, a similar workshop directed towards young girls to learn basic skills in coding, in hopes to bring interest and awareness to tech-related opportunities as a career.

To register for Ladies Learning Code, click here.

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Peterborough Entrepreneur Launches Mobile App For Users To Discover Their Next Meal Based On Their Mood

Peterborough entrepreneur Sultan Moni, a student at Trent University, has launched a new app that could change the way consumers choose their next meal. Zatiq is a platform for users to discover local foods around them that will match their cravings to a meal.

Through artificial intelligence, this unique app—now available in Google Play Store and launching on the App store in August—could redefine the food and hospitality industry. A mix of inputting the user’s mood and meal preferences will allow the app to be personalized at any user’s command.

“People are always hungry but often never know what they want to eat,” says Moni. “I wanted to solve that problem since there are so many different types of meals to discover.”

Moni is based out of the Innovation Cluster’s downtown Cube in Peterborough, and combined his love for trying new meals and developing technology to create a food discovery app that can benefit anyone who wants to discover new food and find that perfect dish.

 Entrepreneur Sultan Moni

Entrepreneur Sultan Moni

“It is exciting to see a disruptive new app born in Peterborough & the Kawarthas which has the potential to be used in different markets around the world," says Michael Skinner, President & CEO of the Innovation Cluster.

With Zatiq’s leading search capabilities, there are various inputs available to find their next meal. When searching by business, user’s can browse for specific restaurants, cafés and other food hot spots. The innovative “mood” search engine lets the user find meals that will satisfy based on what they are feeling, such as happy or heartbroken. No matter what kind of day the person is having, they can find a meal fit for them.

With the ability for users to follow each other’s profiles, the app provides an interactive experience when trying new foods, allowing people to comment or like another user’s ratings, check-ins, or pictures.

Another benefit of the app is each time a user checks in to a location, points are gained. These can be redeemed as coupons, discounts, samples, offers and other deals provided by businesses. Rewards could be anything from a free coffee to a free iPhone 7.

“This app will expand even more as people in different locations download it,” says Moni. “Zatiq will allow users to add meals and locations to the app’s search list, so anyone around the world will be able to find a good meal, gain points and have fun wherever they are.”

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