Autonomous Vehicle Corridor Planned in Florida
"A bill proposed in the Florida Legislature would bring a smart corridor with autonomous vehicles to Altamonte Springs," reports Ryan Lynch.
"Driverless electric shuttles would take people to the Uptown Altamonte district as well as to places such as the Altamonte Springs SunRail station, AdventHealth Altamonte Springs and the Altamonte Mall," adds Lynch.
HB 403, proposed by Rep. Scott Plakon (R-Longwood), would request $2 million in funding from the Florida Department of Transportation to fund the project. The city of Altamonte Springs would provide $500,000. A joint private partner will pay the remaining $6.2 million needed for the project.
According to the bill, the project is intended to ease congestion on State Road 436. State officials are pitching the corridor as a new, alternate mode of transportation, as well as a "last-mile" transportation solution.
As noted by Lynch, the Altamonte Springs corridor plans are far from the only autonomous vehicle plans in the works in Florida. "Orlando-based Beep Inc. said it plans to add two autonomous shuttles in the fast-growing Lake Nona area in southeast Orlando by this spring as part of a larger mobility program in the area called Move Nona," according to Lynch.
"Also in the works is the SunTrax self-driving vehicle test facility in Polk County — a 2.25-mile test track designed for high-speed travel —which is being built on a 475-acre Auburndale site and is set to have its first phase open this year."