Creating a Framework to Plan for the Adaptation of Transportation Infrastructure in the Era of Autonomous Vehicles

Dr. Yafeng Yin, professor of civil engineering at the University of Florida Transportation Institute (UFTI), is working on a STRIDE-funded project that focuses on the infrastructure adaptation planning of automated vehicles (AVs) on roads and highways. The project is titled Infrastructure Adaptation Planning for Automoumous Vehicles. This STRIDE-funded research is critical and timely as California, Florida, Michigan, Nevada, and Washington, D.C., have already legalized the testing of these types of vehicles on public roads and car manufacturers such as Volvo and Audi are working on creating AV prototypes. 

It’s only a matter of time these cars will be on the market, sharing the road with conventional vehicles. The roads of the near future will need to support this new technology, and government agencies will need to respond by creating policy, practices and infrastructure for the eventual deployment of AVs.

How will Dr. Yin produce this framework? A mathematical modeling framework will be created to assist government agencies in determining where to implement AV mobility applications that could, for instance, prevent the activation of traffic bottlenecks, or government agencies may decide to designate certain roads, traffic lanes or highway segments as "AV only" to improve the flow of traffic. These "AV only" areas will expand as more and more of these vehicles become available, eventually leading to a fully autonomous and connected transportation system. 

The self-driving automobile is no longer a fantasy of science fiction, it’s an exciting, new technology, one that is well on its way to becoming a reality on our roads. We’ve already seen a version of it - the Google car - an autonomous vehicle (AV) navigating through roads and city streets out west. 

“We hope that the findings from this research can make a compelling case for the need and benefit of infrastructure adaptation planning to embrace the AV technology," Dr. Yin said.

For more information, contact:
Yafeng Yin, Ph.D.
Professor
Civil & Coastal Engineering
yafeng@ce.ufl.edu