The trucking industry is rapidly expanding, and the country recognizes that we must look to new transportation technologies to accommodate. Although, by the looks of recent events, driverless trucks aren’t quite a topic of discussion, yet. On October 13, 2016, President Obama hosted the White House Frontiers Conference to discuss the goals and challenges of new technologies that will build U.S. capacity. There the U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced that a grant of about $65 million will be given to support transportation projects across the country.
Transportation Technologies: Congestion
The main focus of the transportation projects is to tackle the pressing issues of mass transit, safety, and congestion. Out of the $65 million, the Advanced Transportation and Congestion Management Technologies Deployment (ATCMTD) was awarded $56.6 million. Projects under the ATCMTD aim to fight congestion by using technological advancements to improve the efficiency of the highway system with the growing population in mind.
The ATCMTD will extend their grant to benefit eight major cities in the U.S. But Pittsburgh and San Francisco will receive the biggest slices with nearly $11 million each. Pittsburgh has plans to implement infrastructure technologies that’ll improve connections in the form of corridors known as Smart Spine. Another element from their Smart City application is the implementation of smart traffic signals. It’s a tested and proven method to reduce congestion by up to forty percent.
San Francisco plans to spend their share by improving the tolling at Bay Bridge. You can expect HOV and transit use incentives, such as priority for connected vehicles. All of which will reduce congestion.
Transportation Technologies: Mobility Tools
Jumping on the Uber bandwagon, the U.S. DOT created the MOD Sandbox Program which received $8 million out of the original grant. A combination of research and programs, the MOD Sandbox Program hopes to support communities as they integrate public and private transit options. Eleven cities will benefit from the eleven projects that undergo this endeavor. Time will only tell if their efforts to increase the population’s mobility will ultimately decrease congestion. Here’s hoping.