UPDATE: The region’s first driverless shuttle vehicles will be undergoing a 12-month trial at the University of New England by the end of the year.
EARLIER: Minister for Roads Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey made the announcement Monday that the NSW government will partner with transport companies Busways, EasyMile and Via to deliver a driverless shuttle vehicle for trial in Coffs Harbour and Armidale before the end of the year.
The announcement follows the Armidale Regional Council’s submission of expressions of interest in the project earlier this year.
Councillors voted unanimously in March to submit an expression of interest with Transport NSW, after they opened in December.
Comment: Whatever your feelings about new technology, this is why it is important to try (July 26, 2018)
Council’s service leader Lindsay Woodland said at the time that a number of regional towns were keen to take part.
”There’s a whole series of community problems we could solve with this and we’d like to be at the forefront,” Mr Woodland said.
The state is currently trialling driverless vehicle technology at Sydney's Olympic Park.
"We'll be implementing what we've already learnt from Olympic Park but this trial will be tailored to Coffs Harbour helping deliver improved transport solutions for regional NSW as we prepare our communities for the future," Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance said.
The trial will roll out in three phases in Coffs Harbour later in the year. The government has said safety will be a priority throughout the trial, promising shuttle supervisors will be on board at all times.
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