Impacts of Connected Vehicles and Automated Vehicles on State and Local Transportation Agencies--Task-Order Support. State and Local Impacts of Automated Freight Transportation Systems

The automation of freight transportation systems is proceeding along multiple fronts and at a pace faster than this sector’s historical pace of change. Private capital is flowing into technologies and companies in this space at levels that are also unusual in the sector. Freight system automation occurs in several environments and throughout the SAE spectrum of automation levels. Truck platooning concepts are focused on corridors that emphasize interstates, but that also have application on major urban freeways. The relative ease of automating limited-access highways relative to urban areas is enticing new operating concepts to be thought about in which distribution centers and similar transfer points are increasingly located adjacent to highway access points, anticipating a future environment in which manned trucks are driven to the access point, followed by a highly automated line haul run across the highway network. Within urban cores, the sector is enjoying a period of robust experimentation in last-mile automated freight delivery options, with localities struggling to keep up with legal, regulatory, land use and other issues within their jurisdictions. Marine and rail port environments present a different operating environment for the introduction of the same basic family of automation technologies. In 2016, NCHRP Project 20-102(03) identified a set of research initiatives needed to advance automated (and connected) freight systems. The recommendations may be a starting point for updated research; they include the areas of planning, regulation, policy, application-level research, technical standards development, and stakeholder engagement. Topics such as physical and cyber security and privacy are included and important to consider. This research will identify the range of automated freight transportation systems that are under development or consideration, and assess likelihoods, timing, and expected penetrations of deployment. Within this range, the research should offer governments at the state and local level with an enumeration of the issues that impact them and insight on how to address. The research should also guide state and local governments to act in a way complementary to and in anticipation of the applicable federal guidance in effect at the time of this study (such as defined in the U.S. DOT’s Federal Automated Vehicle Policy).


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $350000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-102(22)

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Rogers, William

  • Start Date: 20181203
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01687627
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-102(22)
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Dec 3 2018 3:04PM