Automated Transportation

Anticipated Benefits of Automated Transportation

Car accident

Increased Safety

As an agency, one of our key priorities is safety –  of both our staff and the traveling public. Transportation technology equipped with higher levels of automation, that assume the primary driving task, may one day help address key roadway safety challenges such as driver distraction, fatigue, impairment, and speeding. We have a long journey ahead of us to achieve the potential safety benefits of automation, but we’re not aware of any other technology or approaches that hold the promise to save lives and improve quality of life through transportation.

Older woman driving

Accessibility & Mobility

Connected and automated vehicles can provide expanded accessibility and mobility options for those not able to drive or without a vehicle (e.g. aging populations, persons with disabilities, affordability challenges).

lots of traffic

System Efficiency

Opportunities to improve supply chain efficiency while potentially reducing traffic congestion. While the business case for automated transportation continues to evolve, there is an opportunity to address workforce shortages for trucking or transit operations, potentially allowing for such vehicles to operate for extended hours and not sit idle.

people sitting in car

Economic & Societal

Opportunity to reduce transportation barriers of where people live, work, and play. As high-speed internet and advanced communication technologies provide solutions for people to work remotely, automated transportation may provide expanded mobility options by allowing people to be productive and work while they travel.

riding bike on Des Moines trail

Health & Environment

An opportunity to rethink how we plan our communities and where we live to maximize health and sustainable transportation. As automated transportation solutions come online and become more prevalent, it has already made us rethink how we manage the use of curb space in communities. It could also change how we plan and provide space for such things as public parking and other related uses (e.g., electric vehicle charging stations), potentially allowing for expanded open spaces for active transportation modes like cycling and walking.


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