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Business Secretary opens UK centre for smart transport technology

Business Secretary Vince Cable has opened a new innovation centre for smart transport technology that will transform the movement of people and goods around the world, generating up to £90 billion per year for the UK by 2025.

Based in Milton Keynes, the Transport Systems Catapult’s ‘Imovation Centre’ will help make journeys more seamless, smart, and efficient. It will support business growth in this emerging market, positioning the UK as a global leader in Intelligent Mobility products and services -- from driverless vehicles and improved airport data systems to integrated logistics, sentiment mapping and smart traffic lights.

The centre is part of the Government’s industrial strategy – a long-term plan to deliver high-skilled jobs and growth.

Speaking at a special media preview of the Centre in Milton Keynes, the Business Secretary, Vince Cable said: “Britain has a long history of transport innovation; from the shipbuilders who paved the way for globalisation, to the railways, that underpinned the industrial revolution.

This new innovation centre will ensure the UK is well placed to profit from the increased demand for high-tech transport solutions- creating jobs, supporting businesses, and driving economic growth.”

Operated by the Transport Systems Catapult, the Imovation Centre (combining Intelligent Mobility and innovation) is a world-class collaboration space for innovators, entrepreneurs, research organisations and businesses using the latest technological developments to improve the transportation of people and goods. It will also offer modelling and testing facilities, allowing new products to be properly trialled and demonstrated.

Steve Yianni, Chief Executive of the Transport Systems Catapult said: “Intelligent Mobility harnesses new technologies to create seamless journeys, where transport is smart and connected, and delays and congestions are a thing of the past. The Imovation Centre will take the brightest solutions to the most pressing transport challenges, and help make those ideas a commercial success.”

It is estimated that the global market in Intelligent Mobility will be worth around £900bn a year by 2025, and the Imovation Centre aims to help the UK secure at least a ten percent share of that market. The Transport Systems Catapult will directly contribute £712 million in economic value to the UK during its first five years (2013-2018).


Following the official opening by Dr Cable, staff at the centre provided a series of demonstrations and simulations of some of the projects already being worked on, including the LUTZ Pathfinder programme which will see driverless pods being tested on the pavements of Milton Keynes. Key players from the transport industry and members of the media were also able to tour the facilities and see examples of the centre’s state-of-the-art modelling and visualisation capabilities.

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