News Release: SUNY Poly Part of Research Initiative to Improve Public Transportation and Infrastructure

News Release: SUNY Poly Part of Research Initiative to Improve Public Transportation and Infrastructure

Monday, June 5, 2023 - 10:44
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For Release:        Immediate – June 5, 2023
Contact:               Steve Ference, Director of University Marketing & Communications | (518) 429-7742 |

$5M in grants to support consortium led by CUNY, with SUNY Poly using probes and location-based sensors to collect traffic data and evaluate bottlenecks

ALBANY and UTICA, NY – SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) announced that it has been awarded funds from the U.S. Department of Transportation, as researchers from its campuses in Albany and Utica participate in the overall $5 million research effort spearheaded by CUNY in collaboration with nearly one dozen colleges and universities from across New York State, New Jersey, and Puerto Rico.

As part of the new Center for Social and Economic Mobility for People and Communities through Transportation, or SEMPACT, SUNY Poly researchers will assess public transportation and infrastructure needs through the strategic use of probes and sensors. This work is anticipated to culminate in a final evaluation of strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities made possible by obtaining and studying private sector traffic data in targeted transportation corridors.

“On behalf of SUNY Poly, we are grateful to Senators Schumer and Gillibrand for their continued efforts to support research and educational opportunities that can drive improved outcomes for the public, and we are excited to work with CUNY and the other institutions as part of SEMPACT,” said SUNY Poly Officer-in-Charge Dr. Andrew Russell. “Our faculty, researchers, and students will be able to take the knowledge they gain from this research initiative and connect with our local communities to drive impactful results, including a more equitable and sustainable public transportation system in New York State and beyond.”

The five-year grant will also enable SUNY Poly students to gain first-hand experience designing research objectives and collecting and analyzing data that can serve to enhance the quality, sustainability, efficiency, and effectiveness of public transportation, with lessons learned able to be broadly applied.

SEMPACT’s vision is focused on “leveraging recent advances in vehicle and infrastructure technologies; data; and modeling, analytics, and visualization; in order to plan, design, implement, and operate a more equitable, resilient, and sustainable transportation system for Region 2 that supports mobility and access to opportunity for all the region’s residents and businesses.” Region 2 includes New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. In these locations, SEMPACT’s work will “improve the mobility of people and goods and the USDOT research priorities: Economic Strength & Global Competitiveness, Equity, and Climate & Sustainability.” The consortium will also implement a unique education program designed to prepare a highly-skilled transportation workforce, with a focus on individuals from historically underrepresented groups.

Read an earlier news release from Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand about the grant here.


About SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly)
SUNY Poly is New York’s globally recognized, high-tech educational ecosystem. SUNY Poly offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the emerging disciplines of nanoscience and nanoengineering, as well as cutting-edge nanobioscience programs at its Albany campus, and undergraduate and graduate degrees in technology, including engineering, cybersecurity, computer science, and the engineering technologies; professional studies, including business, communication, and nursing; and arts and sciences, including natural sciences, game design, mathematics, humanities, and social sciences at its Utica campus; thriving athletic, recreational, and cultural programs, events, and activities complement the campus experience. As the world’s most advanced, university-driven research enterprise, SUNY Poly boasts billions of dollars in high-tech investments and hundreds of corporate partners since its inception. For information visit