RFP - Request for Proposal

Professional Services

Smart Cities Challenge Proposal Development


I. Background: About Invest Ottawa

Invest Ottawa is the lead economic development agency for the City of Ottawa, facilitating economic growth and job creation across our region. Guided by a mission to make Ottawa the best place in Canada to start and grow a business, we help to catalyze the growth and success of local entrepreneurs and firms. We offer programs and services that enable innovation, investment and trade, helping companies to compete with anyone in the world.


II. Project Objectives

The consultant, working with Invest Ottawa and the City of Ottawa, will develop and draft a proposal in response to the Smart Cities Challenge due on April 24, 2018 that aligns with and advances a foundational element(s) of the Smart City Strategy approved by Ottawa City Council (Smart City 2.0) Details of the Challenge and the City of Ottawa’s Council approved Smart Cities Strategy are available at the links below:

Smart City Challenge:

Smart City 2.0:


Within the framework of Smart City 2.0, a key element to building Ottawa as a Smart City that both Invest Ottawa and the City of Ottawa are seeking to pursue within the Challenge Statement for the City’s bid for the Smart City Challenge relates to the theme of connectivity and in particular related to the unique geographic condition of Ottawa as the largest city in Canada in terms of land mass with approximately 85% of this land mass being rural where connectivity challenges are most significant and where connectivity is critical for advancing rural economic growth. While rural connectivity is considered a key challenge for the City related to advancing the City’s smart city agenda, it is also considered important to recognize how this fits into the broader connectivity challenges for the City in a way that supports the deployment of various vertical technology streams dealing with matters such as autonomous vehicles, intelligence transportation systems, public safety, data collection and analytics, and smart city operations to highlight some.

We are seeking a consultant or firm with a proven methodology in complex, multi-stakeholder bid preparation to complete the Smart Cities Challenge application. The consultant would be expected to facilitate and assist in community (residents/stakeholders) consultation and engagement, to confirm the appropriate Challenge Statement that fits within the City’s Smart City Strategy (a strategy that was developed with extensive engagement with key stakeholder groups) within the connectivity theme including rural. Attributes that will provide for positioning the Challenge statement in a way that recognizes and capitalizes on the City’s unique geographical and knowledge based economy eco-system will be important as well as positioning the challenge statement and the City’s bid as something that others across the country can learn from and/or adopt. The consultant or consultant firm would be required to work with the City and Invest Ottawa to deliver on all components of the Smart Cities Challenge application.

The role of Invest Ottawa will be to manage and coordinate the Smart City Challenge application process in partnership with the City of Ottawa.


III. Project Timelines

Request for Proposals (RFP) Issued
4:00pm EST, January 9, 2018

Deadline for questions
4:00 pm EST, January 15, 2018

Submission Deadline for Full Proposals
4:00pm EST, February 2, 2018

Proposed Project Launch
Week of February 19, 2018

The intention of Invest Ottawa is to award a contract in consultation with the City for this project. This RFP does not obligate acceptance of any bid. Invest Ottawa in consultation with the City maintains the right to reject any or all proposals. Full proposals submitted to Invest Ottawa in response to this RFP will not be returned to the proponent.


IV. Conflict of Interest

Invest Ottawa is a not-for-profit organization that fully complies with the Procurement Guideline for Publicly Funded Organizations in Ontario established by the Government of Ontario.

In order to ensure unbiased objectivity, it is essential that all proponents are arms-length from Invest Ottawa, the Innovation Centre at Bayview Yards, and the City of Ottawa.


V. Scope of Work

With reference to the Smart Cities Challenge (see link above), the key deliverable is a completed application with supporting activities, including but not limited to, the following:

  1. A Challenge Statement focused on connectivity including rural areas with specific outcomes that must be measurable, ambitious, and achievable through the proposed use of data and connected technology;
  2. A stakeholder engagement plan, delivered in both English and French, to develop the Challenge Statement and to support the overall process to develop the application;
  3. Lessons learned from other cities with a focus on connectivity including rural areas;
  4. A plan to align and leverage Ottawa’s Smart City Strategy, Smart City 2.0, as well as existing smart cities projects planned or currently underway in Ottawa;
  5. Presentations to senior municipal government officials and council
  6. An overall work plan aligned with the Smart Cities Challenge timeline.


VI. Mandatory Requirements

  1. Proposals must be submitted in two separate PDF files.
  2. PDF File 1 – Technical Proposal.
  3. PDF File 2 – Completed Pricing Summary – Schedule “A” which includes the following information:
    1. Total charges quoted for this engagement;
    2. A comprehensive description of all project fees; and
    3. Invoice payment terms, including any discounts for early payment.
  4. Maximum budget, including all disbursements, travel if required and other out-of-pocket costs: $100,000, including HST.
  5. Proposal must be submitted by email with the two required PDF documents noted above.
  6. Proposals will be accepted until 4:00 pm EST, February 2, 2018. Proposals received after the submission time will be excluded from the evaluation process.


VII. Proposal

Invest Ottawa understands that the scope of work requested may be conducted by a single consultant, a consultant group, a consulting firm, or consortia of consultants. The proposal should provide the name, title, address, telephone number and email address for each individual engaged in scope activities. Further, if a consultant group or consortia of consultants is proposed, the proposal should indicate who will serve as the “key point of contact” for the purposes of this project and overall engagement with Invest Ottawa.

At a minimum, proposals must include the following:

A – Overview of the Project Team: Proponent Qualifications and Roles

The proposal must describe the qualifications of the proponent to deliver on the objectives of this project and conduct the scope of work proposed. This includes:

  • Knowledge of Ottawa’s smart city ecosystem including the city’s significant rural presence and smart agriculture;
  • Knowledge and understanding of the City’s Smart City Strategy, Smart City 2.0, and its three goals centred on Connectivity, a Smart Economy, and an Innovative Government.
  • Knowledge of Smart Cities (including other countries and best practices);
  • Technical skills including disruptive technologies and open innovation models; and
  • Experience developing community/stakeholder engagement plans and facilitating community/ stakeholder consultations.

When summarizing experience, proponents should describe three previous similar projects in terms of scale and scope (maximum of two pages per example) that demonstrate how their proposed methodology was applied and helped the client organization to achieve defined objectives. This should include examples of methodologies and work plans developed with or for organizations that require extensive stakeholder engagement with a broad-based community to achieve collective impact.

If a consultant group or partnership of consultants is proposed to conduct the RFP scope of work, the proposal must indicate which activities each consultant will conduct as well as information about their associated level of expertise, qualifications, knowledge and experience to conduct those specific activities.

B – Project Methodology

The proposal should contain a detailed description of the methodology, and associated tasks and activities to be conducted by the proponent to complete the scope of work for this project. This includes:

  • How the proposed methodology directly addresses the objectives of the Smart Cities Challenge including defined deliverables and project timelines.

C – Detailed Work Plan and Timeline

Describe in detail the steps or phases proposed within the methodology:

  • The specific activities to be conducted, and project team members and external stakeholders to be engaged;
  • The milestone(s), deliverables(s) and outcome(s) at each step or stage in the methodology;
  • A timeline for the activities at each step or stage of the methodology, and how each activity will be completed;
  • Payment plan for each step/milestone in the methodology.

D – Risk Mitigation Strategies

An assessment of the potential risks and mitigation strategies for addressing these identified risks associated with the project must be included.

E – References

References should be drawn from the three example projects provided by the proponent. The proposal should include references of individuals who can speak directly to their experience with the proponent on relevant projects of similar scope. Each reference should include the name, title, address, telephone number and email address for each individual.


VIII. Question/ Inquiries

Proponents are invited to present questions or inquiries about this RFP. Questions are to be submitted by 4pm on January 15, 2018 to Richard Quigley at [email protected]. Responses to questions will be shared with all bidders.


IX. Evaluation of Proposals

  • Stage I – Review to determine which proposals comply with all mandatory requirements for submission as outlined in this RFP. Proposals failing to address and satisfy all mandatory requirements by the required submission deadline will not be considered by Invest Ottawa.
  • Stage II – Scoring by a review committee of each qualified proposal on the basis of the rated criteria with the exclusion of pricing. Proponents with a score of 75 percent or higher on technical criteria will move to Stage III of the proposal evaluation process.
  • Stage III – Scoring of the pricing submitted. Proponents will be rank ordered based on technical criteria and pricing as noted below. The highest ranked proponent will be selected for reference verification.
  • Stage IV – Following the conduct of required reference verification, final proponent will be recommended for contract.


Ranked Criteria for Proposal Evaluation

A – Proponent Organization and Project Team Members – Strong knowledge of Ottawa’s smart city ecosystem ( including rural connectivity and smart agriculture), knowledge of Smart Cities (including other countries and best practices), technical skills including disruptive technologies, experience developing community/stakeholder engagement plans and facilitating community/stakeholder consultations, previous experience on three projects of similar size and scope, and ability to deliver on the project objectives based on qualifications: 30 percent

B – Project Methodology – The steps, tools and processes, including stakeholder engagement, to be utilized to guide the project team through the development and execution as described above: 25 percent

C – Detailed Work Plan and Timeline – Description of the specific work tasks to be completed including when and how each task will be completed: 15 percent

D – Risk Mitigation Strategies – An assessment of the potential risks and mitigation strategies for addressing the identified risks associated with the project: 5 percent

E – References: Information from references will be evaluated using the following criteria: 5 percent

  • The reference would hire the consultant again;
  • The original scope of services was completed within the specified timeline;
  • Interim deadlines were met in a timely manner;
  • The consultant was responsive to the reference’s needs;
  • The consultant anticipated problems and solved them quickly and effectively; and
  • The original scope of services was completed within the project budget.

Payment – The proposed payment plan including frequency of payment and linking of payments to deliverables: 20 percent

Proposals will be evaluated based on the ranked criteria below:

PDF FilesCriteriaPointsScore
1 – Technical ProposalA – Proponent Organization and Project Team Members30
1 – Technical ProposalB – Project Methodology25
1 – Technical ProposalC – Detailed Work Plan and Timeline15
1 – Technical ProposalD – Risk Mitigation Strategies5
1 – Technical ProposalE – References5
2 – Pricing ProposalPrice (Separate PDF)20
Total Score



Proponents must achieve a minimum of 60 of 80 points of the technical criteria evaluation (75 percent) for their pricing to be evaluated. Proponent pricing will be scored based on a relative pricing formula using the cost set out in the Pricing Summary – Schedule A.

(Lowest price / Proponent) x Total Available Points = Score for proposal for Pricing Proponent price

The bid will be evaluated by a review committee made of individuals from Invest Ottawa, the City of Ottawa and Hydro Ottawa. The identities of the review committee members will remain confidential.


X. Submission Guidelines

All responses to this RFP must be submitted via email to Richard Quigley at: [email protected]. Please note SC2018 in the subject line

  • Full proposals must be submitted via email with the PDF documents referenced in this RFP by 4:00pm EST, February 2, 2018



Pricing Summary SC2018