In an effort to promote public transportation, the city of Beverly Hills is gearing up to introduce a new network of self-driving electric bus shuttles. The decision stems from another innovation, as within the next decade, Beverly Hills is set to get two new subway stops that will connect to downtown Los Angeles.
The problem, however, is that the majority of the town’s residents would not have a way to access these new stops as neither will have park and ride commuter lots. The city planners have come up with a brand new, innovative solution to this problem: electric shuttles.
In this new system, the shuttles will come to the passengers on command with the use of an app.
This new way of taking public transit will benefit the riders, especially students and the elderly. Seniors and students make up over half of all passenger trips, and it will be particularly convenient for them as the bus will pick them up at their exact locations rather than force them to wait at a pre-established bus stop.
These shuttles will optimize the routes using an algorithm, and because of this, the ride will be quicker and more efficient.
Additionally, this option would erase the stress on passengers of having to deal with traffic, or finding parking at their destination.
Since driver-less vehicle technology is growing rapidly, experts believe this new system can be in place by 2026.
John Mirisch, mayor of Beverly Hills promises this initiative will happen soon.
As reported by Fastcoexist.com, Mirisch explained, “People say, ‘Oh, this is going to be something my grandkids can do.’ Well, this is going to be something we all will do, hopefully within the next couple of years. I know that’s optimistic, but it will be here before any of us can imagine.”
Beverly Hills isn’t the first city in the world to dabble in on-demand shuttles. Helsinki, Finland’s capital, and San Francisco, CA, have experimented with driver-less vehicles, but they have not taken off.
Mirisch hopes that they can develop a cohesive plan for Beverly Hills that can be adopted by cities all around the world.