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FirstGroup to work on shared autonomous vehicle research at automated vehicle proving ground in California

By AUVSI News posted 27-06-2017 12:09


A transport operator called FirstGroup will conduct research on shared autonomous vehicles at the Concord, California-based GoMentum Station, after signing an agreement with the federally designated automated vehicle proving ground.

Through the partnership, First Transit, which is a United States division of the United Kingdom-headquartered FirstGroup, will use the 2,000-hectare test facility as a test site for “innovative transport applications.”

One of the applications that First Transit will use the test facility for is a pilot project that began back in 2016, which seeks to deploy the “first commercially operated shared autonomous vehicle on public roads in the United States.”

“The partnership with GoMentum Station allows us to identify new mobility solutions for our customers using shared autonomous vehicle technology,” says Brad Thomas, president of First Transit.

“We see the broad application of this technology as a great first and last mile solution plus countless other transportation challenges.”

Currently, GoMentum Station is being used by the Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) and its partners, as they work to accelerate the next generation of transportation technologies.

Randell Iwasaki, Executive Director of CCTA, says, “the partnership with First Transit expands the international reach of GoMentum Station, and will provide a unique opportunity for multi-modal testing with a firm that specializes in transit operations.” 

Iwasaki adds, "this will enable us to explore how automated vehicles can complement and enhance existing mobility options.”

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