Portland’s City Council voted unanimously last week to move forward with an autonomous vehicle pilot and invite companies to submit proposals for testing on Portland streets by the end of 2017.
“Autonomous vehicles have the potential to be a truly transformative technology,” a release from the city Bureau of Transportation reads. “They could benefit our communities by reducing crashes, improving first- and last-mile connections for public transit riders, and reducing the high cost of owning a private vehicle. They also have the potential to significantly increase traffic congestion, vehicle miles traveled and climate pollution. The protections and rules of the road adopted by state and local governments will substantially determine how much benefit and how much burden we experience.”
The initiative was launched by Mayor Ted Wheeler, Transportation Bureau Director Leah Treat and Commissioner Dan Saltzman in April, the Portland Business Journal reports. It will help the city craft plans for autonomous vehicle regulation and test the sensors that self-driving cars rely on.
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