The physical manifestation of connection within a community is its transportation system, so it is natural that a collaborative city center be built around the ongoing development, implementation, coordination and maintenance of this system. We often think of transportation as a critical component of the basic necessities of modern life including education and employment, but it is also important to the health of a community: food, music, art, entertainment, exploration, human connections. Unified Potential’s Collaborative City Center addresses these elements in a cost-effective manner that benefits all segments of society.
The Modern Fleet
The way the vehicles are owned and operated is changing, blurring the lines between private and public use. Collaboratively sharing our resources improves the quality of life for everyone in the city, but we have to define how that is going to happen, assuring the community benefits while protecting the rights and assets of the individual citizens.
If we wipe the slate clean, some emerging components are obvious: electrification, versatility, and connection.
Electrification: Electric drivetrains are more efficient, quieter, and vastly easier to maintain. Removing the complexity of the internal combustion engine removes the costs that are inherent in that complexity, reducing the costs of transportation. Where gas engines continue to have benefits on longer trips, effective in-city transportation is composed of a multitude of shorter trips, providing a tremendous opportunity for a community to capitalize on this new technology. Inherent in this vision is a need for expanding education of our next generation of service. Because this technology will spread into many other aspects of our lives, facilitating ways for our young people to learn feeds this value back into the community.
Versatility: The cars of today sit idle for the majority of their working lives, increasing cost and decreasing effectiveness. To get the most out of vehicles, we need to share. Shared vehicle ownership, whether among individuals who are doing the driving themselves, or “commercial” drivers who are transporting others, is the future. But the extraneous requirements that come with owning and operating a vehicle – insurance, personal property tax, and depreciation – mean that we have to rethink how we pay for, insure, own and operate these vehicles. A vehicle designed to be shared is going to look and be configured, differently than a vehicle purchased for private use. These things must be implemented as a system: a manufacturer will never be able to design, build, and sell a vehicle of this type without a community in which to prove its worth, one in which the insurance, personal property tax, and depreciation issues have been addressed with synergistic programs. This requires collaboration and connection.
Connection: Sharing only works if we are connected, and there remains one elusive hurdle: putting everything on a single network. MoveUP was design to be that network, purpose-built, extremely flexible, and adaptable to the needs of everyone. Over time, those needs will evolve, so continuous improvements and maintenance will be a necessary component. And that means education.
Engineering and Materials Science
Despite electrification, computerization, and automation, vehicles remain physical objects made of metal, rubber, fabric, plastic, and composites. What better source of apprenticeship and education than the transportation system that physically connects the people of a community? By centralizing and supporting these resources on the city infrastructure, the same resources can be offered back to the community, for personal needs or projects By recycling the revenue from these projects, we can reduce the running costs of the system as a whole.
The software control of modern devices is both critical and extremely powerful. Communities are now able to write and implement software that leverages the power of ubiquitous devices such as smart phones for the collective good. MoveUP will serve as an example of what we are capable of achieving, just as its maintenance becomes a source of learning.
More than just a necessity of life, food is a critical and enriching component of our community; in the way we work, play, and live. The number, variety, and quality of available restaurants is a routine metric for evaluating the desirability – the health – of a city. However, running a successful restaurant is not easy given high startup costs, thin margins, and a public generally intolerant of early missteps. By providing an environment facilitating the testing of new ideas without the risks of a large initial investment, the hurdles are lowered and new possibilities are enabled, while providing the community a place to routinely sample new and varied meals.
Music and Art
Anywhere people gather to eat, music inevitably follows. Though we have incredibly diverse methods of accessing recorded music, nothing compares to a live performance. Visit any city and you will get an understanding of the depths of human talent, even if you never leave the downtown streets. Live performance is both an art and a developed skill, but there are few venues that provide critical evaluation with the potential for structured feedback and directed improvement in the very medium of music that is most popular in everyday life. A Collaborative City Center is the perfect setting for just such a structured proving ground, able to both showcase and develop local artists.
With connected transportation as its backbone and collaborative community as its soul, Unified Potential’s vision could be a transformative model for the way we live together.
Currently serving as Principal for Balmedie Consulting, Stuart has thirty eight years of upstream oil and
gas expertise developed from working and living across the globe in locations including: USA and
Canada; Europe, the Middle East; West Africa; Trinidad; Southeast Asia and Australia.
Stuart has held leadership positions in project management, engineering, procurement, R&D, and operations. He has a track record for developing and leading multi-disciplined owner teams in successfully delivering complex, multi-billion dollar Greenfield and Brownfield land-based and offshore projects. Stuart is currently working with a team in validating new technologies to safely unlock access to high-pressure and high-temperature deep water hydrocarbon resources.
His education and credentials include a B.Sc. Petroleum Eng. (Honors), Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology, 1985. He has authored and co-authored numerous publications and holds two patents for new technologies developed with his field of expertise.
Stuart’s racing resume is extensive, spanning from Alberta Veteran Motocross Champion in 1990 to 2017 Masters Champion of the pro-level IMSA Prototype Challenge series.
Stuart was born in Aberdeen, Scotland. He and his wife presently live in Houston, Texas.
Serge grew up in the travel/airline business, and went on to graduate from Cornell University’s
School of Hotel Administration in 1981. His first job was as an analyst with Pannell, Kerr Foster
(PKF) performing feasibility studies for hotels. In 1985, he joined Marriott International and
later rose to Vice President of Sales Planning and Analysis. While at Marriott Serge pioneered
the role of Data Mining to answer three questions: 1) How many sales people should we have; 2)
Where should they be located and 3) Who should they be calling on?
After 13 years at headquarters, Serge made the decision to retire from Marriott in 1998. He relocated to Lynchburg, Virginia so he could take his “big city, big company” hotel industry expertise and offer it to clients at small town prices. Early clients included Kraft, Nabisco, Gillette, and Hershey Foods. Today virtually all of the major hotel companies in North Americas, including Marriott, Hilton, Wyndham, Hyatt, InterContinental, Sofitel, and Omni, rely on Topline Group to manage much of their customer data, and deliver insights that are not otherwise possible.
Gina began studying music seriously at an early age, attending the Pennsylvania
Academy of Music during her middle and high school years. She graduated from the
program with honors, and won two concerto competitions on violin during her time
there, performing the Barber violin concerto and Zigeunerweisen with orchestra. After
high school, DiCarlo studied at the Eastman School of Music under the tutelage of Lynn
Blakeslee. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance and Music
Education from ESM, with honors, in 2014.
DiCarlo is the current Orchestra Director at E.C. Glass High School in Lynchburg, Virginia, and she serves as the Adjunct Violin and Viola Instructor at Randolph College. Additionally, she is the current Chair of South Central Senior Regional Orchestra and the Director of the Lynchburg Symphony Youth Orchestra and Junior Strings.
DiCarlo performs regularly on the violin, both in chamber and orchestral settings. She has been a member of the Pennsylvania Philharmonic, the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, the Endless Mountain Music Festival, and the Lynchburg Symphony Orchestra, where she served as guest concertmaster in the 2015-2016 season, and returned as concertmaster for the 2016-2017 season. DiCarlo also guest conducted the Lynchburg Symphony for the Bernstein Bash event in October 2018. She has performed abroad in Austria, China, and Tibet, and has collaborated with rock, jazz, and Spanish ensembles for various events and performances. The song “Rain”, which featured DiCarlo, aired on Season 8 of Grey’s Anatomy in 2011.
In addition to DiCarlo’s many musical pursuits, she is also a published author. Her debut novel was released in May 2019.
Justin has an incredibly diverse background including achieving Eagle Scout, serving as
a race mechanic for Velocity Motorsports, completing a two year mission trip in the
Dominican Republic, a stint in law enforcement as a Deputy in the Alamance County
Sheriff’s Department and then transitioning to Spanish interpreter for the county. He
started his own business, Hill Aircraft and Auto Designs, restoring and painting vintage
and modern race cars and planes, where he has become a specialist in metal and
composites work and an artist in every sense of the word.
In 2018, he began working at AKG of America as a Training Coordinator, working in tandem with engineers, production crews, and human resources to develop and implement training materials and work instructions in both English and Spanish.
Justin is originally from Statesville, NC and currently lives in Burlington with his wife and young daughter.