The advent of autonomous vehicles is fraught with uncertainty, especially when it comes to their impacts on traffic, travel choices, and the broader transportation system.
They offer many potential benefits, but many potential negative impacts, depending in part on how they are deployed. While widespread adoption may still be decades away, significant numbers will begin to be on the roads in less than 10 years, according to manufacturers and other observers. Ultimately, many expect them to have major transformational effects on our transportation systems and built environment.
Today’s policymakers have an opportunity to implement plans that will guide the efficient usage of AVs and rider choices that may affect us for generations. To do so, it’s worth considering AV impacts as a potential transportation demand management problem – and preparing TDM-type policies to address them.
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