Friday, December 2, 2016

Michigan Begins Construction on Self-Driving Vehicle Test Facility

BAY CITY, Mich. –– State of Michigan officials have officially begun construction on a new self-driving vehicle test facility in Willow Run on the old grounds of the famed Arsenal of Democracy factory during World War II. The nonprofit, American Center for Mobility (ACM) will serve as a national proving ground for connected and autonomous vehicles.

Michigan Begins Construction on Self-Driving Vehicle Test Facility

Automakers are excited to use the facility now, as John Maddox, ACM’s CEO, claims to have received 45 letters of support from OEMs, major suppliers, and others who are interested in using the facility. General Motors, Ford and Toyota have all expressed enthusiasm for the project, and the engineering group SAE International has already signed a memorandum of understanding to use the facility in hopes of creating and evaluating standards for new transportation technology.

A portion of the facility will be dedicated to highway-style testing of self-driving vehicles, and is expected to open as early as December 2017. While other portions of the proving ground are to become operational in gradual phases. Parts of the highway loop will incorporate the use of public roads, and a 700-foot curved tunnel will be built as part of the test track.

Michigan Begins Construction on Self-Driving Vehicle Test Facility

Michigan's government leaders have begun construction on a self-driving vehicle test facility where a factory once stood that built B-24 bombers at the rate of a plane per hour. Officials hope that the facility will ensure that the state stays relevant in the auto industry for decades to come.

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