, Director, SLPP, Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Autonomous vehicles (AVs) promise to usher in a multitude of benefits, such as increased vehicle efficiency, increased safety, and a decreased need for parking. While many of these benefits will affect densely-populated urban areas, several- such as increased safety and mobility for those who cannot drive- can accrue nearly anywhere. So far, most AV demonstrations and testing have been conducted in urban settings or on college or corporate campuses, therefore leaving rural and small urban communities out of the conversation. This project aims to provide justifications for bringing the technology into these communities by outlining the changing demographics and transit needs of rural and small urban communities and by working with several actual communities to develop a realistic framework for how they may plan for the future or AVs and for an AV demonstration.