First Transit partners Californian authority for autonomous vehicle pilot
First Transit is partnering with the Livermore Amador Valley Transit Authority (LAVTA) to pilot the first operation of a shared autonomous vehicle (SAV) on a public road by a transit agency in the state of California.
The SAV pilot will connect passengers from the Dublin / Pleasanton Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) station in Dublin, California, to nearby shopping and entertainment.
The testing phase for this pilot is expected to take two years without passengers.
The SAV is designed to travel short distances using pre-programmed routes, and is equipped with a sensor and intelligent vehicle system to detect obstacles and avoid collisions. Each SAV can carry 12 passengers and can operate for 14 hours on one battery charge.
First Transit will provide operational support, maintenance, and an onboard customer service agent for passenger questions and information. This is the fifth SAV initiative for First Transit in North America. Easy Mile is the SAV manufacturer.
“We are proud to work with the LAVTA team bringing SAV technology to their passengers and community,” said Justin Pate, senior vice president of marketing and business development at First Transit. “After the testing phase, an onboard customer service agent will be available to answer passenger questions about how this technology is advancing to enhance their transit experience.”
First Transit’s four additional SAV pilots and initiatives across North America include Bishop Ranch Office Park in San Ramon, California, GoMentum Station in Concord, California, the City of Arlington in Arlington, Texas, and the SAV roadshow with the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT).