As the new year kicks off, we are reflecting on some amazing technological advancements that hold such great promise in improving transportation safety and relieving congestion, and helping drivers manage traffic conditions more efficiently.
First comes the news that General Motors is investing $500 million in ride-hailing service Lyft, and the partners will begin developing an on-demand network for driverless cars. The initiative has the potential to reduce the number of cars on the road. Additionally, driverless vehicle technology has the potential to greatly improve safety by eliminating driver errors.
Next, the Commonwealth and navigation application Waze are combining forces to provide more and better real-time information about road conditions – weather, congestion, construction, etc. Real-time information enables motorists to pick an alternate route or select a different time to travel, also improving safety and relieving congestion.
Links to the aforementioned news items may be found below. The Coalition welcomes any and all measures that will help return our transportation system to an acceptable condition and level of efficiency.
Transportation Issue Update
- As part of GM’s $500 million investment in Lyft, the companies will work on developing an on-demand network of self-driving cars, an area of research that companies like Google, Tesla and Uber have all devoted enormous resources to in recent years.
- PA and navigation app Waze have teamed up to provide better real-time traffic information. The app can be downloaded at no cost at your smart phone’s app store.
- A study that will help determine whether building a highway bypass around Scranton is worth it won’t be ready until the first quarter of this year, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission officials said, because the agency wanted to gather more accurate traffic data for Interstate 81.
- In the ideological war over urban planning, anti-transit conservatives are gaining funding and allies, according to Governing Magazine.
- Several publications published news articles and op-ed articles by PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards summarizing the department’s progress in 2015.
- The PA Turnpike raised tolls by 6 percent on Jan. 3 to help make continuing payments to PennDOT mandated in legislation several years ago. The commission took the opportunity to update the public on the progress it’s making in expanding most of the toll road to six lanes.
- Several states are tweaking their gasoline tax formulas to account for lower fuel prices in recent months.