AEM awards $50,000 prize to competition winnersAEM awarded Hyperlane by Anthony Barrs and Baiyu Chen a $50,000 prize Wednesday at the finale event of its Infrastructure Vision 2050 Challenge, a crowdsourced, incentivized competition for world innovators to design a transportation system that would move people more safely and efficiently than today’s existing network. 

Barrs and Chen presented their design, Hyperlane, at the Challenge finale, live from CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017, the largest international gathering in the Western Hemisphere for the construction industries.

Hyperlane is a proposal to build new infrastructure that allows autonomous vehicles to travel at high speeds along existing roadways, and to guard against congestion in the Hyperlanes by using surge pricing.

“It’s really exciting to see that our idea was recognized by some of the biggest names in the industry, and especially here at CONEXPO-CON/AGG,” Chen said following the competition.

Peter Muller, whose design, the SmART Driverless Vehicle System, came in second place in the competition, took home $35,000. Third place and a $15,000 prize was awarded to Kevin Lu for his Adaptive Pavement System, which would automate traffic to reduce congestion.

“These five finalists were truly outstanding,” said Dennis Slater, AEM president. “Their designs are a reminder of what’s possible when we democratize innovation and challenge innovators to see the world as it could be. It’s inspiring.”

The finale event was held in CONEXPO-CON/AGG’s new Tech Experience, a 75,000-square foot, immersive, future-forward showcase that allows visitors to see what’s possible tomorrow, today. 

The finalists presented their ideas to a panel of expert judges, including:

  • Adie Tomer, Fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program
  • Elle Shelley, Chief Marketing Officer at Local Motors
  • Dan Sturges, Adjunct Professor of Transportation Design at the College for Creative Studies
  • Ingrid Reisman, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for the Las Vegas Monorail Company
  • Keith Hennessey, Principal Vice President and Head of Public-Private Partnerships at Bechtel

Vivek Wadhwa, Distinguished Fellow at Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering and a Director of Research at Duke University’s Pratt School of Engineering, hosted the live event.

“It’s an honor to be part of this competition, which not only stimulates our minds about what is possible, but also inspires an important dialogue about the possibilities of modern infrastructure,” said Wadhwa. “AEM wants to facilitate this conversation that will lead to productive solutions going forward.”

Launched in January, the three-phased incentivized competition challenged a global community of innovators to think in aspirational and disruptive ways about how to reimagine personal mobility, freight movement, and utility infrastructure components and systems in the United States.

The Infrastructure Vision 2050 Challenge is part of a larger policy-focused thought-leadership initiative launched by AEM in 2015 to develop a long-term national vision for United States infrastructure.

All five finalist teams’ presentations are on display in the Infrastructure tent of the Tech Experience until the end of the week. To find out more about the finalists and their projects, visit