The Department of Transportation (USDOT) has announced the launch of a new Automation Proving Ground Pilot Program. Through this program, the Department will designate facilities as qualified proving grounds for the safe testing, demonstration, and deployment of automated vehicle technology. We believe that by designating facilities as part of a Community of Practice, we can foster a safe environment for these entities to share best practices related to testing and developing this technology.
In a news release, Secretary of Transportation, Anthony Foxx, said: “We believe that by designating facilities as part of a Community of Practice, we can foster a safe environment for these entities to share best practices related to testing and developing this technology.”
Foxx added: “Safety is our top priority at USDOT and over the past year we have leaned in on ushering in these innovations that will transform transportation as we know it. Through efforts such as our Smart City Challenge, and the first of its kind Federal Automated Vehicle Policy released in September, and now the Automation Proving Ground Pilot Program, we are setting a new foundation for this technology to be safely leveraged and implemented into the coming decades.”
The USDOT recently announced the creation of an Advisory Committee on Automation in Transportation that is assembling experts to help assess new transportation technologies. Foxx said: “Our hope is that by designating Automation Proving Grounds, we will be able to build on that safety effort while taking advantage of these advanced technologies in a responsible way.”
USDOT will be accepting proposals to be designated a USDOT Automated Vehicle Proving Ground through Dec. 19.