SACRAMENTO – Assemblywoman Bonilla’s groundbreaking AB 1592, which was signed on Thursday, September 29th by Governor Brown, will authorize the Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) to test the first fully autonomous vehicle, not equipped with a steering wheel, brake pedal, accelerator or operator, on a California public road. This bill, which expands CCTA’s existing transportation technology testing program, will help advance the development of connected vehicle and autonomous vehicle technologies.
“California has always been a global leader in innovation and as transportation technologies evolve, so must our laws and regulations,” said Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla (D-Concord). “With the passage of AB 1592 our state will prove to the federal government and the rest of the nation that California remains the leader, and that the deployment of autonomous vehicles without the presence of a driver can be done safely and successfully.”
CCTA is currently testing autonomous vehicles at GoMentum Station, one of the world’s largest secure transportation proving grounds, located within the former United States Navy weapons station in Concord. AB 1592 authorizes CCTA, to conduct a pilot project to test fully electric and autonomous, low-speed, multi-passenger, vehicles at GoMentum Station and a private business park in Contra Costa County. The shared autonomous vehicles, referred to as people movers, have the potential to transform mobility as the first-and-last mile connectors to larger mass transit platforms. Upon completion of the pilot project, the vehicles will be utilized to increase transit ridership, eliminate the need for expensive and space-consuming parking structures, reduce the use of single occupancy vehicles on the state’s congested roads and highways, while improving the safety, convenience, and efficiency of transportation.
“Our state has been in a transportation infrastructure crisis with a severe shortfall in funding for repair and improvements to our roads and highways,” said Bonilla. “In addition, we have set necessary, but stringent statewide greenhouse gas reduction goals, which driving our cars and sitting in traffic accounts for a large portion of the pollutants. AB 1592 will move us one step closer towards implementing safe, low-cost, low-emission, and flexible transportation modes, which will help us address both of these pressing issues.”
Assemblywoman Susan A. Bonilla (D-Concord) was elected in November 2010 and represents California’s 14th Assembly District, which includes Contra Costa County and Solano County.