Future of transport on show as City gears up for Supercars

21 Nov 2019

Newcastle’s driverless shuttle will be available for racegoers and locals to test-ride in Wheeler Place this weekend.

Newcastle’s very own Aussie Racing Cars driver Charlotte Poynting joined Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes for the announcement today which comes at the same time as the release of City of Newcastle’s first mobile app.

“The driverless shuttle moves a bit slower than I will be around the track this weekend, but it’s just as exciting that this futuristic transport technology is being used in Newcastle,” Ms Poynting said.

“Newcastle is my home-town and it’s great to see the way the city is changing and embracing technology like never before.”

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the driverless shuttle will be operating in full driverless mode in Wheeler Place as part of a busy weekend of activities and events planned in Newcastle.

“Community members and racegoers keen to take a ride can turn up to Wheeler Place from 10am both Saturday and Sunday to experience driverless technology,” the Lord Mayor said.

“Keolis Downer staff including driverless shuttle specialists and trained chaperones will be onsite to answer people’s questions around the trial.”

The City has also developed a mobile app to make doing business with the City and finding key points of interest easier in line with its Smart City Strategy.

Improving the cultural experience for locals and visitors alike, the app will provide information on current and upcoming events, including late-breaking City-related news, feature attractions, accommodation and hospitality offerings

“A big part of making the city more attractive to visitors and prospective businesses is making its offerings and attractions more accessible,” Cr Nelmes said.

“And this app does just that. We are actively packaging information and data to make life easier in the City for residents, visitors and workers.

Wayfinding and a portal to report issues to the City for fixing are also among the new efficiencies offered by the app.

In future, it is expected to offer augmented reality content to enrich experiences, such as guided walking tours, and help improve awareness of Newcastle’s history and heritage buildings.

Business that would like to be included in the app can upload their relevant information to the Australian Tourism Data Warehouse, the same data source used in the newly refreshed Visit Newcastle website.

The City of Newcastle App is available for download via the Apple store and Google Play.