City Revitalisation Innovation Challenge 2.0

Transport for NSW is seeking creative and innovative technology solutions that attract customers to safely return to city centres for leisure and entertainment.


It has been over two years since the first confirmed COVID-19 case in Australia. During this time, COVID-19 restrictions have changed our travel behaviours and its impact on businesses has completely altered the landscape of city centres.

Since the pandemic started, the number of workers in our city centres have fallen each lockdown and has not fully recovered. Businesses in industries concentrates in city centres, such as arts, recreation, tourism and retail, have had financial difficulties during 2021’s lockdown periods.

The NSW Government and Local Councils are encouraging people to return to their city centres in a COVID Safe manner, to boost economic activity and support businesses to thrive.

Workers returning to the office have not returned to pre-pandemic levels and complete recovery to pre-pandemic numbers are uncertain in the near future, which each delay further entrenching flexible working patterns. Despite this, patronage in city centres is recovering, suggesting that people are returning to city centres primarily for reasons other than work.

Over November 2021 to February 2022, the Transport Digital Accelerator conducted research consulting customers, local councils, government agencies, education institutions and peak bodies to inform the focus areas of this challenge.

If people are not returning to city centres for work, how might we create new experiences that redefine what city centres are and who they are for? Our research with customers and stakeholders uncovered opportunities to redefine the city experience, build on the momentum of new travel behaviours sparked by COVID-19 and create new ways of exploring the city for leisure and entertainment.

Stream 1: Active Transport

Active transport has boomed in the past two years as it is perceived as COVID Safe due to the ability to socially distance. New infrastructure offering better safety and connectivity are key triggers for uptake in active transport use.How might we create more effortless and supportive journey stop experiences for active transport users?

Stream 2: Dynamic Precincts

With the shift in how people are using city centres, there is an opportunity to rethink how we use our streetscapes to make them more relevant to a diverse group of users - whether they’re walking, cycling, or driving in to the city.How might we build greater versatility into our precincts to provide more enjoyable choices that meet the various mobility needs of users?

The challenge

The City Revitalisation Innovation Challenge will accelerate innovation and technology solutions that;

  • Increases the number of visitors to the Sydney CBD, Newcastle CBD and Parramatta CBD.
  • Improves the customer experience of travelling to and exploring Sydney CBD, Newcastle CBD and Parramatta CBD.

What we are looking for?

Transport for NSW is looking to accelerate mobility-based projects that invent new creative ways of connecting and activating precincts in a safe way, aided by technology.  We are interested in new ideas and approaches that can improve the travel experience of customers travelling to and within city centres for leisure and entertainment.

TfNSW are keen to partner with tech startups, industry and/or academia who can creatively deliver new experiences.

There are two streams of work. Organisations can respond to one stream or both streams.

Stream One focuses on how TfNSW can support or enhance existing active transport infrastructure by providing more effortless and supportive end-to-end journey experiences. TfNSW is interested in solutions that make cycling and walking easier, safer and friendlier, ideally in formats that can be flexible and easily deployable across multiple locations.

Stream Two focuses on reimagining the use of existing streetscapes to make them more attractive and accessible for customers to travel in and around city centres. Solutions should focus on making existing spaces adaptable to cater to various users at different times of the day/week.

Your approach should consider how to obtain relevant data and information for your initiative. TfNSW is interested to hear how your solution will optimise the experience for customers, venues and destinations in city centres. Transport for NSW will consider submissions from individual organisations, and consortiums.

Out of Scope

TfNSW is less interested in:

  • New apps
  • Duplications of existing Transport projects
  • Projects that are not able to scale (e.g. one-off events)
  • Trials that do not utilise technology

Solution starters

The following solution areas are a starting point only - most of which we identified as opportunities through horizon scanning. And, you are only limited by your imagination.

Stream 1: Active Transport for NSW

New habits have formed during COVID-19, including the increased uptake of cycling and walking. Developments in active transport have boomed during this time and there are a number of TfNSW initiatives in place to increase the development of footpaths and cycleways over the next five years. This Innovation Challenge stream is looking to support the momentum in use of footpaths and cycleways, with new approaches to seamless and supportive journey experiences.

Desired TfNSW outcome:

  • Introduce flexible solutions that improve the end-to-end journey experience for active transport.
  • Monitor existing active transport solutions to help inform improvements to the customer journey.

Thought starters:

  • Data collection on use of active cycleways (e.g. monitoring and classifying cycleway activity, real-time bike rack availability, monitoring bike rack length of use)
  • Solutions that increase safety and encourage uptake of active transport (e.g. digital mapping of safe cycling routes or available end-of-trip facilities)
  • Notifications of ongoing maintenance (e.g. collecting data to monitor or inform bike lane/support infrastructure repair)
  • Flexible walking and cycling facilities (e.g. pop-up safe bike storage / bike repair facilities, solar-powered e-bike stations, rain / shade cover, helmet provisions)

Stream 2: Dynamic Precincts

Public space is a premium in our city centres and in this next phase of city revitalisation there is an opportunity to shape a new way of how we move in to and around these precincts. TfNSW is looking for solutions that can elevate existing streetscapes to become more usable, flexible and adaptable to the various mobility needs of users. 

Desired TfNSW outcome:

  • Solutions that enable dynamic use of streetscapes to encourage more efficient travel options to and within city centres.
  • Tech-enabled solutions that repurpose streetscapes into more safe, efficient and enjoyable customer experiences

Thought starters:

  • Real-time monitoring and view of accessible parking spots for journey planning
  • Information display: dynamic signage, wayfinding and communication solutions (e.g. dynamic displays of changing kerbside allocations throughout the day)
  • Initiatives that promote safe and enjoyable travel experiences (particularly for walking and cycling e.g. dynamic street crossings, smart pavements, nightlife parklets)

On offer is:

  • Equity-free seed funding to develop your idea
  • A partnership with the NSW Government to deliver solutions that reimagine the city experience
  • An existing pathway to actively engage with councils and the relative Transport for NSW staff
  • Access to TfNSW’s network of industry partners, executives, and subject matter experts
  • A potential customer beyond seed funding alone

You may respond with multiple submissions. The best applications will be tailored to clearly address the problem statement. Following and referring to this page will maximise your chances of success.

This is a valuable way to raise your profile with Transport for NSW and NSW Government, and support the revitalisation and recovery of city centres across NSW.


Contracts will be awarded in May 2022. It is anticipated that projects will commence planning in June 2022.

  • We understand that projects may need coordination among government agencies and stakeholders or more detailed co-design. Transport for NSW will assist with this.

Applications open March 15th, 2022 and close March 31st 2022 at 12pm – all applications must be made via eTender.

Who should apply?


Winners of a recent Innovation Challenge included a startup at MVP stage and an ASX-listed company.

The best applicants will have the capability of delivering a solution, combined with a thorough understanding of the problem area.

If you have a solution aligned to the City Revitalisation Innovation Challenge project’s objectives and goals, and are looking to make it a reality quickly, this is for you.

The Digital Accelerator encourages applications from small businesses, startups, and ATSIC businesses as much as we do any other. All applications will be assessed on the evaluation criteria.

Prior to contracting, all suppliers will be required to adhere to the NSW Government’s ICT Services Scheme and be registered as a ‘Base Supplier’. This is not required at submission stage.

For further details please refer to

Why apply?

The opportunity to revitalise city centres.

Above anything, you have the very real opportunity to create something scalable that shapes the kind of city we want to live in the future and makes the lives of everyone better.

To achieve that, we have a suite of support that includes seed funding, access to industry partners and mentors, assets and data existing in Transport for NSW and potentially other agencies, SME advice, and more.

Apply via eTender.

Evaluation criteria

  1. Does the idea align to the objectives of the challenge?
  2. Is the solution a new and unique way of doing business?
  3. How impactful is the solution to customers? (considering both depth and breadth of impact)
  4. Can the project be deployed and completed in a rapid timeframe?
  5. Is the project technically feasible with no significant risk?
  6. If successful, is the approach repeatable and scalable? Has the applicant considered how this might be achieved?
  7. Short-listed applicants must be willing to come to NSW for meetings as required.
  8. Short-listed applicants must have an established ABN for contract.

Key Dates and Milestones

Challenge Launch and RFEOI Applications OpenIn-person launch event with accompanying details and application form released on the Digital Accelerator website15 March 2022
Briefing SessionInformation session (MS Team) – email to register for this session.18 March 2022
Submission of questions closeApplicants may submit clarification questions24 March 2022
RFEOI applications closeSubmissions must be received by 12pm31 March 2022
All applicants notified. RFQ released to Shortlist applicantsEmail or phone notification to all applicants.8 April 2022
Pitch PreparationPreparation time for shortlisted applicants.8 – 25 April 2022
Pitch to the PanelShortlisted vendors present a five minute pitch to a panel of Executive advisors.26 April 2022
Co-Design SessionShortlisted participants participate in a co-design session with TfNSW.27 – 29 Apr 2022
RFQ applications openShortlisted applicants invited to submit an RFQ, including written proposal with costing.2 May 2022
RFQ closesWritten proposal submitted.10 May 2022
Selected vendors notifiedApplicants notified of next steps.16 May 2022
Contract AwardedContracts to be completed by this date.30 May 2022
Projects commenceCity Revitalisation projects begin from.6 June 2022

More on the City Revitalisation Innovation Challenge 2.0


Questions you might ask.


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Handy, helpful links for applicants.


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The Transport Digital Accelerator

The home page for the Transport Digital Accelerator.

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