Durham County

You could see new technology tested in Durham thanks to these 4 local startups

A handshake.
A handshake.

Four companies – all local – have won the opportunity to test their products in the real world, out in the field, using the city’s data and infrastructure.

Out of 34 applicants, the startups Dropark, 8 Rivers Networks, Lucid Dream VR and Talented were selected as victors of, and thereby gaining entry into, the The City of Durham Office of Performance and Innovation’s “2017 Innovate Durham program.”

Applicants’ entries were accessed and judged on four primarily criteria:

▪ Would their products improve Durham’s city operations?

▪ Were their products creatively conceived and created to be easily compatible with other technologies?

▪ Did they demonstrate an ability to stimulate economic vitality?

▪ And could these products help Durham advance its strategic plan?

All four winners are based in the Triangle with three of them working out of downtown Durham office spaces.

Take a glance at this year’s winners

▪ Dropark is a real-time parking app to help visitors find available public or private parking near their destinations.

▪ 8 Rivers Networks is an optical wireless communications system that deliver gigabit speeds over air instead of fiber.

▪ Talented is an experiential learning game platform that “gamifies” trainings to help improve learning.

▪ Lucid Dream VR is a virtual and augmented reality company that can visualize “un-built structures” or overlay data sets.

“These four companies will get a chance to develop a use case with a large city, and for some of them, we’ll be their first customer,” said Josh Edwards, the director of Durham’s Office of Performance and Innovation. “At the same time, the city gets to explore, at no cost, how new technologies may improve our operations.

“It’s a win-win,” he said.

Colin Warren-Hicks: 919-419-6636, @CWarrenHicks