There is no doubt that the introduction of self-driving vehicles is a cool technological achievement; but, more than just that, these vehicles have the potential to transform daily transportation methods and the urban landscape.
Read on to learn more about how self-driving automobiles can help in the quest to build better, more sustainable cities.
The Current Situation
Automobiles have transformed society, both in positive and negative ways.
While they have certainly helped facilitate individual freedom and increased mobility, they have also caused our cities to grow into urban sprawl. Moreover, they cause extensive road congestion, which, in turn, leads to lost productivity and wasted time, high levels of transportation-related pollution, and all issues related to parking.
All of these factors are being considered with the introduction of self-driving cars, in the hopes that the positives can be extended and the negatives can be reduced. This new type of vehicle presents an opportunity to realize a vision for how the world’s cities can be made more livable and sustainable by utilizing self-driving technology.
This vision includes improved safety on the roads and environmental health through enhanced fuel efficiency and a decrease in cars on the road, as well as greater accessibility for all members of the community and more space that can be utilized to enhance living, working and playing.
Alternatively, the other option is to continue down the current path — one that is only set to make our cities even more polluted, clogged, and virtually uninhabitable.
First and foremost, one of the most widely discussed benefits of self-driving cars is the improved safety that is expected from its application.
Around the world, driver error is considered to be the most prominent determinant of road accidents due to situations such as driving under the influence, texting while driving, preoccupied or aggressive driving, driving too fast or having too slow of a reaction time, as well as a simple lack of experience. By removing these driver behaviors from the equation, vehicles with a self-driving capacity are set to save countless lives.
Enhanced Fuel Efficiency
In terms of sustainability, there is likely to be a significant improvement in fuel efficiency due to advanced algorithms for more economical driving and the feasibility of deploying lighter vehicles thanks to improved safety (and decreased collision risk) features.
Studies show that by transitioning to electric, driverless taxis, per mile emissions could potentially be reduced by as much as 94% by 2030.
Ridesharing is widespread, and only going to grow with the incorporation of self-driving cars. Experts suggest that the high prevalence of ridesharing could decrease the number of vehicles required in urban areas by 80%.
When personal vehicles were first introduced, they were seen as a means of attaining physical freedom as they enabled an individual to go where they wanted, when they wanted.
Similarly, for certain populations in the community, a rise in the availability of self-driving cars will also mean an increase in accessibility and an advancement in personal freedom.
For example, for the elderly, the handicapped, and those who are too young to drive, the presence of self-driving vehicles in their community will allow them to be far more mobile than they are at present.
Higher Levels of Productivity
Even for individuals who currently are mobile with their car, having (or taking) a self-driving car frees them up (during what would have been driving time) to engage in other pursuits such as work or entertainment.
This, in turn, will help all members of the community become more productive than ever while eliminating the chance of them being distracted by their work or entertainment while driving.
Less Traffic and A Reduced Need for Parking Lots
When it comes to discussing the potential effects of self-driving cars, there are always points of contention; however, some of the most optimistic experts on the subject conclude that the broad adoption of self-driving vehicles and an increase in ridesharing will bring about a decrease in traffic.
Not to mention, ridesharing would also mean a drop in the demand for parking lots and garages. These are two unquestionably positive consequences that will significantly impact the daily lives of residents in these locales as this space can then be utilized for other more sustainable uses such as bike lanes, running paths and parks.
If you are interested in learning more, the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport is bringing together specialists in the area of self-driving technology to improve and expedite the adoption of self-driving technology both globally and in the United Arab Emirates.
Dubai is the perfect place to hold such a conference as the emirate is currently working to achieve its goal of having 25% of all road trips in Dubai smart and driverless by 2030.
What do you think about introducing self-driving cars into cities? Is it something that you would like to see in your community?
If you wish to participate in the conversation, or simply want to know more about how self-driving technology can benefit you and your community, get in touch with the SD Congress, today.
A global 2-day conference that will raise public awareness of modern and future transport by identifying the impact of technology on investments and transport strategies.
A cutting-edge exhibition showcasing the future of self-driving vehicles. The Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport Exhibition is the essential place to attain key decision makers’ attention, and to meet your target audience.