Urbanism Next
University of OregonUniversity of Oregon

Procurement & Processes

Typical public procurement processes may not meet the needs of a rapidly-evolving landscape. 

New technologies present opportunities, but the processes that cities have traditionally used to bring these opportunities to communities are often not compatible with the speed and complexity of the new technologies around us. Creating new and modified processes that expedited procurement while still meeting city and community goals are ways of bridging this gap.

Issues & approaches

Pilots: Pilots allow cities the opportunity to test new approaches before implementing larger changes to standing policies or procedures. This avoids an often costly and time-consuming process of regulatory change until the value of the proposed change is better understood. It also gives cities the opportunity to better shape and understand the rules they might use to govern a new approach while letting them test and develop relationships with private sector partners. Analyzing the data and outcomes of pilots gives cities evidence-based means for creating or adjusting the final roll out of new technologies to help ensure that the final policies best meet the needs of the city and its communities.

Adaptable Procurement Processes: The speed and inflexibility of typical public procurement processes are barriers when it comes to creating timely and effective policies in a rapidly-evolving landscape. Establishing alternative paths for procurement that allow private sector partners to suggest unsolicited proposals brings these partners into the process earlier. This allows contracts to be organized around desired outcomes, as opposed to prescriptive rules and procedures, and can help cities be more nimble and better face the challenges before them.

Examples/case studies

graphic of people walking next to a light rail with buildings in the background

Office of Extraordinary Innovation

Los Angeles Office of Extraordinary Innovation

View LA Metro 

LA Metro’s Office of Extraordinary Innovation (EOI) evaluates and implements new approaches for transportation, including new mobility services and providers and an Unsolicited Proposal program.

aerial view of downtown Austin

Adaptable Processes - Unsolicited Proposal Program  

Austin Unsolicited Proposal Program

View Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Austin, TX)

Capitol Metro’s Unsolicited Proposal Program creates a path for proposing innovative ideas outside the agency’s traditional solicitation process. 

screenshot of Pilot Projects Index webpage

Pilots - Case Studies and Examples

Index of Pilot Projects

View Urbanism Next

Urbanism Next has compiled and cataloged a broad selection of various new mobility Pilot Projects from across the US and the world. Visit the Pilots page in the Resources section of The NEXUS to browse these examples.

Related topics

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Bicyclist riding on protected red bike lanes in the center of busy street in Sao Paulo, Brazil

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electric scooter and bikeshare bike parked on a sidewalk

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