Autonomous Vehicles & Cities
Empowering cities to harness AV technology
Cities are made up of distinct environments, creating a space for people to live, work, shop, and play. Each environment in a city is unique, whether a bustling downtown, residential neighborhoods, campus, or a transit center. City settings are one of the most attractive environments for people to interact with autonomous vehicles. Having different modes of transportation converge with people where they work, shop, and unwind creates opportunities for AV to accelerate the needs of their users.
Introducing autonomous vehicles (AVs) and connected AV systems (CAV) into cities can help these spaces achieve their goal. Connecting people to vital services, delivering food and medicine, keeping our cities clean, and much more can be accomplished with AVs. And as mobility demands increase in the morning and evening, AVs can be quickly adjusted to respond in near real time to help people and goods get to their destinations on time.
Passenger transportation and delivery services in cities will depend on automation to fuel the future of commerce. Together with existing transit and micromobility options, these integrated mobility solutions can create a complete journey within our urban places. Scroll down to learn more about how our transportation planning consultants’ expertise and our AV technology can be applied across the city ecosystem, creating safer, cleaner, more equitable cities.
Low-Speed Shuttles and Pods
From university, hospital, and business campuses to downtown spaces and event venues, low-speed autonomous vehicles (LSAVs) in cities enhances mobility options. LSAVs are mid- to low-capacity passenger transport operating as a fixed-route or on-demand service. These shared shuttles are designed for low-speed and first/last mile environments and carry between 8 and 20 passengers.
When it comes to enhancing delivery trucks with technology, the sky’s the limit! With the demand for quick deliveries increasing, it’s important to find new, safe ways to connect goods and people. Whether it’s freight trucks transporting bulk goods over long distances or medium-duty trucks and vans designed for retail delivery, autonomous trucking allows for all-day delivery and has positive implications for supply chain issues, driver shortages, and driver exhaustion.
Personal Mobility Devices
Personal mobility devices have long been electrified but have only recently found success in AV pilots. Large, public indoor spaces like convention centers, hospitals, and airports allow AVs to give users the independence and personal space they need door-through-door transportation. Companies like industry leader, WHILL, are providing innovative, life-changing solutions to those living with mobility limitations.Learn More about WHILL
Autonomous buses provide an opportunity to create a more sustainable transit system and help a city meet its long-term emissions goals. These buses are high-capacity passenger transport usually operating in use-cases like bus rapid transit (BRT) routes or other public rights-of-way. With the first federally-backed automated BRT service set to be tested in late 2022, we’re already seeing the value autonomous buses can bring to modern cities.
Hailing taxis has become synonymous with navigating busy downtowns. It’s a popular transportation option found in every major city in the world. But what happens when we integrate innovative technologies into taxi operations? Robotaxis are optimized for low-capacity, shared-use transportation. Not surprisingly, robotaxis are one of the most anticipated AV solutions, offering the chance to disrupt the multi-billion-dollar personal vehicle industry and transform ride hailing as we know it.
Last-Mile Delivery Vehicles
Automated delivery vans, pods, and sidewalk bots help augment the ways we connect goods with people across the last-mile (or less) of delivery. These unmanned ground vehicles deliver food, medicine, and other goods and supplies to the doorstep of homes, shops, and businesses, traversing low-speed public roads or sidewalks. Delivery bots can pull right up to a reserved curbside delivery zone, ready to be unloaded, providing for a seamless interaction and delivery. Whether delivering from local restaurants or major chains, last-mile delivery vehicles are helping to make life easier for everyone involved.
While most people may think of AVs as land-based solutions, a shift of perspective and tilt of the head will present the immense opportunity for advanced aerial mobility deployments. Deploying unmanned aerial vehicles can enrich public services and enable time-sensitive, contactless deliveries, operated autonomously. Drone technology can aid in delivering essential goods while also monitoring security needs, critical infrastructure conditions, and more. The applications for drones are far reaching with enormous potential.
Related On-Demand Learning Courses
Our city planning consulting team has developed several courses to educate you on the various aspects of the autonomous vehicle industry and its progress. When you click on a course, you will be taken to a log in screen. Please log in as you will then be led to free and for a fee content.
- Connected Autonomous Vehicle Applications Overview
- Navigating the Path Forward for AV Policy
- Policy: Data Sharing and Cybersecurity
- ADS Infrastructure