Public invited to take part in automated vehicle trials

TRL is inviting members of the public to register to take part in driverless vehicle trials taking place this year in the London Borough of Greenwich.

Greenwich gateway shuttleRegistration is now open for members of the public wishing to take part in driverless vehicle trials in Greenwich. The TRL led GATEway project is part of the “introducing driverless cars to UK roads” initiative from Innovate UK. Funded to the tune of £8 million, the objective of the project is to investigate the public perception, reaction and engagement with a range of different autonomous vehicles.

The GATEway (Greenwich Automated Transport Environment) project will take place in the UK Smart Mobility Living Lab @ Greenwich and registered participants will be able to ride in an autonomous vehicle and provide their opinions about the experience.

Registration is also available for participation in workshops to discuss the future of driverless vehicles, which will start in June and will investigate attitudes towards the use of autonomous vehicles in cities. Participants will be encouraged to discuss and debate the topic as well as participate in creative activities with designers and researchers from GATEway partner, the Royal College of Art.

Commenting on the start of public participation in driverless vehicle development, the UK Government’s Business Secretary, Sajid Javid said, “Making driverless cars a reality is going to revolutionise our roads and travel, making journeys safer, faster and more environmentally-friendly. Very few countries can match our engineering excellence in the automotive sector or our record on innovative research and this announcement shows we are already becoming one of the world’s leading centres for driverless cars technology.”

Pointing out the significance of the move to autonomy and the involvement of the public in their trials, Professor Nick Reed, Director at TRL and Technical Lead of the GATEway project added, “Testing these vehicles in a living environment, like the UK Smart Mobility Living Lab, takes the concept from fiction to reality. It gives the public a chance to experience what it’s like to ride in an automated vehicle and to make their own mind up as to how much they like it, trust it and could accept it as a service in the city.”

Those with experience or knowledge of Greenwich are also encouraged to share their views on driverless vehicles via a web-based sentiment mapping tool. The site provides members of the public with a chance to provide feedback on how driverless vehicles might impact life in and around Greenwich. Contributors are able to revisit the site as many times as they like, adding as many comments as they wish, whenever they choose throughout the duration of the project.

“The aim of the site is to give those familiar with the Greenwich area a chance to provide input on where and how driverless vehicles could work in and around the area. It’s about putting local people right at the centre of exciting transformation and giving them a chance to influence decision making in this area,” commented Mike Saunders, Co-Founder of Commonplace.

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Autonomous Vehicles

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