Get ready, Groruddalen!
The ULTIMO project’s first automated vehicles (AVs) are now set to hit the roads of Groruddalen, Oslo, Norway. Following the thumbs up from local authorities, travellers in the valley will soon see the AVs interacting in everyday road scenarios, just like any other car. Booked on-demand, these AVs will help make mobility more accessible and inclusive.
Right now, Groruddalen benefits from an extensive public transport system, consisting of 19 bus lines, three metro lines, paratransit transport services, and also local train services. So where do ULTIMO’s AVs fit in? The vehicles are there to plug the gaps in the mass transit network, from acting as a feeder network for the local metro station, to replacing existing bus-lines during hours of low demand, and to eliminating the first/last mile barrier to public transport.
The introduction of the AVs kicked off with an event at Kuben High School in Oslo, where students got to sit inside the vehicles and see first-hand the new, innovative features on offer.
All of ULTIMO’s deployment sites are different. The Norwegian site, managed by public transport authority Ruter, has several unique attributes:
- 15-20 shuttles with SAE level 4
- Free-floating on 560kms of road
- 90km/h maximum speed
In addition, Norwegian lead partner Ruter showed off the cars at their visitor centre for AI Demo Day. With around 200 visitors in attendance, the event was a great way to communicate just how powerful AI can be to improve public transport and urban mobility.
Already, the ULTIMO project is making a difference in Groruddalen. In time, perhaps the AVs will become less new and shiny – and just another part of a better connected public transport system.