Safe x Connected Cities Accelerator

The Challenge

Our cities need to be more than just smart. With over 80% of the world’s population living in urban areas, along with a decade of technological changes that are now part of daily living, the road to implementing and creating a path to the ultimate ‘smart city’ is still unclear. Instead of asking how to make our cities smart, we’re asking a different question: How do we create connections of people, things, and technology in cities to truly increase the quality of life of its inhabitants?

Founding Partner

About the program

Safe × Connected Cities Accelerator is joining forces with some of the world’s most innovative companies to work with startups that care about making people’s lives better. We’re looking for startups that want to proactively scale their businesses and test their products’ viability alongside leading corporations, industry professionals and experts around the world.

This collective program believes that by working together and strategically implementing solutions, we can create meaningful changes to urban environments. We invite innovative startups in verticals such as IoT, urban mobility, and the connectivity space to join us on a mission to test and implement solutions that can make cities safer and more connected one block at a time.

Program Details

The Safe x Connected Cities Accelerator is a milestone-driven accelerator program for early-stage companies, with a mission to take on the chasm that every startup must cross: access to scale.

  • Milestone-driven program structured to accelerate the growth of cohort companies with support from enterprise and startup network partners.
  • Program takes place in Toronto across 2 stages lasting between 3 to 6 months (but presence in Toronto is not required full-time)
  • First Stage [3 months]: Tailored programming to help companies design a proof-of-concept (POC) with one of our corporate partners.
  • Second stage [3 months]: The successful proposals advance to the second milestone and get to launch and test the POC in market.
  • No equity investment upfront; opportunity for follow-on investment from Highline Beta and Founding Partners

Why join the program?

  • Connect. The program provides a low-risk platform to connect with enterprise partners and validate technologies, strategies, products, and ideas in close partnership with them and Highline Beta.
  • Test. Through tailored programming and 1:1 coaching, the program helps startups get to a proof-of-concept faster with an opportunity for enterprise scale.
  • Scale. Our enterprise network of leading smart city and mobility collaborators provide an industry-wide ‘unfair advantage’ that can only come from validated products and scale, which in turn amplifies brand awareness and fuels growth.
  • Access funding. Potential funding and access to other institutional investors via the Highline Beta network.

Improving road safety

Trouble lingers on our roads. For ourselves, our families and our neighbours. We cannot ignore the dangers any longer. Whether we’re pedestrians or drivers, when it comes to overcrowded city roads and outdated infrastructure, it’s important to stay safe. How can we find a smarter way around and make our roads safer?

We are looking for startups that are specialized in road safety. Some examples include:

  • Accurate Detection Solutions – Improving intersection safety through accurate detection of pedestrians, cyclists, cars and transit riders to inform decisions about traffic flow and priorities.
  • Sensors & Digital Signage Solutions – Integrated navigation solutions that can communicate real-time information on speed limits, lane closures, road characteristics and traffic flow. Sensors and automation in vehicles that make them safer and innovations that make street crossings, cycling or multi-use streets safer.
  • Data Solutions – Technologies that aggregate private sector and public data to look at the root causes of crashes and suggest interventions. Data solutions to help nationally standardize the collection of collision data.
  • Improved Driving Solutions – Technology to curb distracted driving and reduce other risky driving behaviours. Innovations that help drivers see better and have more time to react.
  • Cycling Safety – Advances in clothing, accessories and bicycle technology that makes street cycling safer. Interventions that reduce unsafe bicycle and motor vehicle interactions.
  • Pedestrian Safety Solutions – Technology and interventions that make the most vulnerable road users safer. Advances that improve the walkability of streets and communities. Innovations that make school buses and other public transit safer when boarding and disembarking.

Join the Program

Applications for the program are now closed!


  • What type of startups are you looking for? Startups that tend to enter our program are at seed stage and above, have a product in market, and have a strong founding team.
  • Can I apply if my company does not fit the IoT, urban mobility, and the connectivity verticals? We encourage all companies that have identified a solution fit to the challenge theme to apply.
  • Do I have to be located in Toronto to take part in the program? Companies are not required to be located in Toronto. However in-person presence — anywhere from 1-3 days a month throughout the program — would be optimal.
  • How long is the program? The program runs for 3-6 months. Remote teams are encouraged to apply. Please note that in-person participation on behalf of your company would be required 1-3 days each month throughout the accelerator program.
  • How do I apply? We use a platform called F6S to accept applications. When you click one of our links to the application you’ll be asked to create a profile. Please make sure you provide an email you are checking so we can send you application updates.
  • What happens after the application has been submitted? The selection team will carefully review each application. If an initial fit between the program and your company/product is identified, you will be invited to arrange an in-person video call with our selection team to get to know your company better.

More challenges coming soon!

If you run a startup focused on mobility, community, or ‘smart cities’ feel free to apply, even if you don’t specifically fit the criteria of our first challenge. Interested in supporting the program? Get in touch

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