The CoEXist project currently describes “automation-readiness” as: “the capability to conduct transport and infrastructure planning with the incorporation of connected and automated vehicles (CAV) in the same comprehensive manner as for existing modes in future plans, where they complement and coexist with conventional vehicles, public transport, pedestrians and cyclists, to achieve and support higher sustainable mobility goals”. This definition is to be refined throughout the course of the project with the objective of developing a framework around this concept that will guide cities in reducing uncertainties related to automation in transport planning. The aim of the Automation-ready Framework is to provide guidance and empower local authorities to make critical and reasonable decisions about the introduction of CAVs into their road networks. It is a transport planning framework for urban road authorities to prepare for the introduction of CAVs on the road network. The framework will include elements about strategic urban mobility planning for CAVs and a guide for urban transport planners with a list of concrete actions that cities can implement today to plan and prepare for the introduction CAVs.
In any form of planning, the main goal is to reduce uncertainty involved with forecasting future developments. Uncertainty in the context of this automation-ready framework mainly concerns the wide range of technological development paths that will occur in the many years to come as well as the business models and different service provisions on how CAVs will be rolled out in cities. The associated policies and regulations that are to be established are still uncertain and will have strong impacts on the type of measures that will be needed in the longer term. The Framework aims to reduce these uncertainties as cities go through each of the phases described next. The Automation-ready Framework is categorised into three phases: (1) Automation Awareness, (2) Planning for Automation-Readiness, (3) Automation-Ready Measures Implementation. *These phases will be elaborated in the deliverable that is to be published in the coming months. The categorisation of the three phases of automation-readiness is an attempt to identify different phases cities have to go through to be able to systematically prepare and plan for the transition from the introduction of CAVs in cities until they become prevalent. For each phase, a set of measures are recommended to facilitate a smooth transition into the sustainable deployment of CAVs into cities. Also, the Framework aims to provide recommendations that are applicable to different European cities, which will experience a wide range of CAV deployment due to unique local circumstances with regards to the mode share between privately, shared or collective CAVs.
To achieve its objective of building the capacity of road authorities and other urban mobility stakeholders, CoEXist has been and will be conducting several stakeholder engagement activities throughout the duration of the project. The results of these consultation processes will be analysed and published as measure recommendations in the Framework. CoEXist has so far held a workshop at the CIVITAS Forum 2017, has taken part in a joint workshop with the H2020 MAVEN and TransAID projects on the implications of vehicle automation on urban roads, and has been involved in discussions in several conferences on the topic of automation in urban mobility (e.g. ITS World Congress 2017, TRB 2018, TRA 2018, ECOMM 2018, mobil.TUM 2018). Over 70 people in total participated in the two workshops that have been conducted thus far, with attendees from local authorities, regional authorities, research institutes, consultancies, car manufacturers, and other urban transport stakeholders. The Framework will be further developed through such stakeholder engagements until the end of the project with presentations of more project results that are to be available within the next year.
Further details of the Framework including the measures that CoEXist recommends for cities to take now will be published in the coming months in the first version of the Framework, with a follow-up final version at the end of project in April 2020.