The Grand Signal

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A digital magazine covering the intersection of technology, human rights and social change.

Ann Arbor seeking to become first American city with driverless cars

November 11, 2013 | Written by The Grand Signal
Photo courtesy of Steve Jurvetson on Flickr |

A joint venture between the University of Michigan, the government, and industry representatives have set out to make Ann Arbor the first American city with a fleet of driverless cars by 2021. The Mobility Transformation Center will house researchers across the entire University from information technology, urban planning, and social science.

“We want to demonstrate fully driverless vehicles operating within the whole infrastructure of the city within an eight-year timeline and to show that these can be safe, effective and commercially successful” said Peter Sweatman, Director of the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute.

Many other academic institutions as well as corporations such as Google have invested significantly in self-driving technology with advances in sensors and cameras. None however, have set out to implement the technology on a wide city scale. With approximately 32,000 deaths last year in the US due to car and truck crashes, self-driving cars will substantially increase road safety while saving people time as they attention would no longer be needed on the road.

Read more about this story on the University of Michigan’s post here.

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