The New South Wales Government has revealed Coffs Harbour and Armidale as two regional areas in the state set to host driverless vehicle trials.
The Coffs Harbour trial sees the state government partner with Busways, Coffs Harbour City Council, EasyMile and Via for trial of a driverless shuttle.
The shuttle will be at different locations around Coffs Harbour, using a level four fully automated EZ10 vehicle with capacity to carry up to 14 passengers.
It will run for 12 months in three phases with gradually increasing levels of operational complexity in real world environments.
Phase 1 sees a shuttle service travelling to Muttonbird Island, operating on the Northern Breakwall.
For the second phase, the shuttle will move to Marion Grove Retirement Village and Phase 3 will see it operate on Harbour Drive in Coffs Harbour CBD.
NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said the trials will be the first of their kind in regional Australia.
“We want to test this technology outside of the Greater Sydney area so our regional communities can be part of our planning for connected and automated vehicles,” Ms. Pavey said.
The NSW Government said the Coffs Harbour trial will commence before the end of 2018.
Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance said the NSW Government is also currently trialing the state’s first fully automated vehicle at Sydney Olympic Park.
“We’ll be implementing what we’ve already learnt from Olympic Park but this trial will be tailored to Coffs Harbour helping deliver improved transport solutions for regional NSW as we prepare our communities for the future,” Mr. Constance said.