A new milestone in transportation has been reached in Las Vegas, as Navya and Keolis launched the first completely autonomous, fully electric shuttle ever to be deployed on a public roadway in the USA.
The autonomous shuttle is being launched by the two French companies in the new Innovation District that was recently created by the city in downtown Las Vegas. Navya’s ARMA vehicle has debuted on an American public street in downtown Las Vegas’s Fremont East Entertainment District. During the week-long pilot, the public will be invited to take free test rides of the driverless vehicle, which carries up to a dozen passengers and was designed for use by state and local governments and transit agencies and operators as an efficient, clean-energy alternative to fossil-fuel powered vehicles.
The pilot was made possible through a partnership between global public transport operator, Keolis, and Navya, which developed the ARMA Shuttle. The public will be able to ride on the shuttle from January 11-20, as it travels along east Fremont Street between Las Vegas Boulevard and Eighth Street, alongside regular street traffic. The city of Las Vegas recently established an Innovation District to create a center for testing groundbreaking technology in the areas of alternative energy, citizen participation, transportation and social infrastructure. The city plans to transform the downtown urban core into a technology incubator focused on safe, efficient, sustainable and environmentally conscious mobility including autonomous and connected vehicles and establishing a platform for deploying innovation.
Navya began testing the ARMA vehicle for service in North America at MCity, the University of Michigan’s unique test site for connected and automated vehicles in December 2016, showcasing the vehicle publicly in the USA for the first time at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week in Las Vegas. Since first deploying the ARMA in France in late 2015, the vehicles have transported more than 100,000 people, and have grown into a fleet of 30 driverless shuttles, which, with the USA, are now in use in seven countries around the world.
“This pilot marks an important milestone in bringing us closer to our shared vision of delivering public mobility solutions that are both connected and sustainable. We are pleased to be showcasing this exciting new technology here in Las Vegas with our partners at the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTCSN), as we work together to deliver energy efficient, sustainable transit solutions that will improve the quality of life for people in Nevada and around the world,” said Clement Michel, CEO of Keolis North America, operator of the RTCSN’s transit system.
Navya VP, Henri Coron, added, “We are delighted to be part of the innovative, new model of urban transportation solutions Mayor Goodman and our transportation partners at Keolis are bringing to the city of Las Vegas. Busy areas, such as the Fremont East Entertainment District, are the perfect place for the ARMA, as it allows people to move easily and safely while reducing car congestion and pollution.”