Boston greenlights nuTonomy to carry out city-wide autonomous cars trials
nuTonomy has been testing autonomous vehicles in certain districts of Boston since 2017
The city of Boston announced that nuTonomy, a firm which specializes in the development of autonomous vehicle software, has been authorized to expand testing on streets city-wide.
Under the city’s supervision, nuTonomy has been testing on streets in the Seaport district since January 2017.
The city of Boston highlighted that creating a policy on the operation of autonomous vehicles on the city streets is a priority of the Go Boston 2030 Transportation Plan.
“Continuing to test autonomous vehicles in a careful and methodical manner represents another step forward in helping us to achieve the vision for improved mobility that was established by residents during the Go Boston 2030 Transportation Plan public process,” said Boston Mayor Martin Walsh. “If deployed thoughtfully, shared fleets of autonomous vehicles could offer the City of Boston the potential to improve safety on our streets, provide equitable connections to the MBTA, and offer a new source of mobility to all Boston residents.”
“Working collaboratively with nuTonomy over the past two years, we have monitored their progress through the testing process and we are confident in the company’s commitment to safety and to our Go Boston 2030 mobility goals,” said Boston Transportation Commissioner Gina Fiandaca.
“We are proud to be the first company authorized to operate autonomous vehicles on public roads city-wide in Boston,” said Karl Iagnemma, president of Aptiv, the firm which owns nuTonomy. “Being recognized by the city for our exceptional safety record is an important milestone for the entire nuTonomy and Aptiv team. Today, we are excited to have access to some of the most complex roads in North America as we continue to focus on improving the safety and efficiency of transportation in cities worldwide.”
Prior to working with Boston, nuTonomy spent almost two years testing autonomous vehicles on public roadways in Singapore. In Boston, nuTonomy’s testing began on streets within the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Industrial Park before the geographic testing area expanded to additional public streets in the Seaport District. This was followed by a pilot program where passengers were transported in nuTonomy vehicles between destinations in the area.
The city of Boston said that the vehicles which will take part in the trial must operate within the legal speed limit at all times. Each vehicle is equipped with a suite of sensors that provide a 360-degree view of the surroundings. Testing may occur in both day and nighttime hours, and during some inclement weather, such as light precipitation, fog, and low temperatures.
Boston also said that Optimus Ride is also currently testing autonomous vehicles in the city. Optimus Ride is operating in the Raymond L. Flynn Marine Industrial Park.