The autonomous shuttle holds up to 10 passengers at a time and will operate at a maximum speed of 15 mph. - Photo courtesy of Beep

The autonomous shuttle holds up to 10 passengers at a time and will operate at a maximum speed of 15 mph.

Photo courtesy of Beep

The City of Peoria, Ariz., will be holding a 60-day autonomous vehicle pilot program with Beep, a Florida-based autonomous mobility solutions company, and shuttle manufacturer Navya.

“This transportation pilot is a unique experiment for our community,” said Mayor Cathy Carlat. “We see this as an important step as we seek to understand some of the innovative solutions that exist around the world, and how they bring value to Peoria residents.”

The fully electric, driverless shuttle is set to launch on Feb. 22 and will operate daily from noon to 6 p.m. The shuttle, which has no steering wheel or pedals, will use a pre-programmed, fixed route with a combination of localization techniques, involving sensors and cameras. It is open to the public without an appointment, fee, or pre-screening. Additionally, the shuttle is ADA-accessible and always has an attendant onboard to ensure riders have a pleasant and safe experience. The Beep Command Center can also communicate with the onboard shuttle attendant at any time. The shuttle holds up to 10 passengers at a time and will operate at a maximum speed of 15 mph as part of the pilot program.

“We are extremely excited about this opportunity,” said Peoria Public Works Director Kevin Burke. “This is level 5 autonomous technology. It could be a game changer for Peoria transit.”

The objective of this pilot program is to understand the feasibility of using autonomous vehicles for the first and last mile, meaning the beginning and end of an individual trip made primarily by public transportation. The pilot program will also capture ridership adoption behaviors and patterns in the City of Peoria.

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