Experience the future of transport

Victorians are lining up to book their place on the state’s first autonomous shuttle bus at La Trobe University.

More than 500 students, staff and members of the public from Melbourne’s north and beyond have already expressed interest in joining the Autonobus trial as it moves into a new phase of testing.

Director of La Trobe’s Centre for Technology Infusion Professor Ani Desai said the time had come for Autonobus to open its doors to passengers.

“We are excited to be offering Victorians a unique opportunity to step into the future and experience first-hand world-leading driverless technology,” Professor Desai said.

“The public’s participation is essential. The success of all new technologies stands or falls with the end user adoption. That is why we are inviting anyone, not only the technology enthusiasts, to come and give us feedback. This feedback will help shape the future of transport in Victoria.

Jonathan Myers, Head of Growth, Innovation and Partnerships at Keolis Downer, said the research team had conducted four months of extensive research on Autonobus to test technical and safety aspects of the bus.

“Since November, Autonobus has travelled hundreds of hours on a set route along Science Drive at La Trobe’s Bundoora campus for testing purposes ensuring passengers safety,” Mr Myers said.

“The aim is to gain a better understanding of how autonomous vehicles can be integrated into the existing public transport system to connect passengers to a transport hub – a concept known as first to last mile connectivity.

Partly funded by the Victorian Government Smarter Journeys Program, the project brings together the private sector, academia and Victoria’s largest member organisation. It is a collaboration between VicRoads, Keolis Downer, La Trobe University, HMI Technologies, RACV and ARRB.

“We are committed to developing technologies which deliver a safer, more efficient and sustainable transport future and electric self-driving vehicles have amazing potential in that regard,” CEO of HMI Technologies Dean Zabrieszach said.

The La Trobe Autonobus trial rides will run until the end of May. To register visit the Autonobus website.

Media Contact - Anastasia Salamastrakis 0428 195 464

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