The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) recently released a report that explores the possibility of autonomous buses.
The report was prepared by agency staff for the TTC board meeting on March 22nd, and noted that the prospect of implementing driverless vehicles in public transit is still years away.
However, the report does go on to say that should autonomous buses ever become viable, the TTC would welcome the opportunity to become a leader in their integration.
The managing director for the Waterloo Centre of Automotive Research at the University of Waterloo, Ross McKenzie, told the Toronto Star that companies have already been able to built autonomous shuttles that run on closed courses like business parks or university campuses.
The next step would be transferring that technology to the city street. Public transit has often been identified as a key area for autonomous vehicle disruption. Another area poised for disruption from autonomous vehicle technology is the trucking and logistics industry.
With the removal of drivers however comes concerns around making sure fares are paid and addressing passenger incidents on board vehicles.
McKenzie goes on to say that the integration of driverless buses into public transit in the city will happen sooner than the public might think.
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