January 2018
From the President
Greetings!Happy New Year! It is already starting well for me and, I hope, for you too. I spent some time this morning on a call which marks the beginning of planning for the next Podcar City Conference in Sweden. Mark your calendar for October 10 - 12, 2018. Then I learned my article was published in Airport Magazine - just in time to be included below (Will Driverless Cars Help Or Hinder Airports?). Today I had lunch with an influential gentleman who may help things move forward. Tomorrow I start a week-long overseas trip that will hopefully result in lots of good things. As you know, ATRA is restructuring this year and getting set to become far more active. Life is good!

As always, enjoy reading!

Best regards,
Peter Muller, ATRA President
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In the coming years, 2getthere’s ParkShuttle in the Rotterdam region (Capelle aan den IJssel) will be transformed into the world’s first autonomous system operating on public roads without featuring a safety driver or steward on board. 

Note: 2getthere is a founding member of the ATRA Industry Group.
Will Driverless Cars Help Or Hinder Airports?
Fully driverless cars will be available soon – probably within about five years. They will have the potential to change many aspects of travel including making the roads safer. Some experts believe they will reduce congestion but this probably requires most cars being driverless, which is not likely to happen for decades. While it is difficult to project how much worse road congestion will get before it may get better, it is possible to deduce what impacts are likely at airports.

The History of the Advanced Transit Association (ATRA)
Year Ten - 1988

By Dr. J. Edward Anderson

Other News
As an emerging economy, India must keep climate costs frugal

Climate change is perhaps not a felt crisis economically, largely because we associate it with an abstract health calamity of pollution or environmental damage of flood, drought and natural disasters, issues which are too gigantic or nebulous to deal with than tailoring your household budget post GST. .

This article implies that pod taxis (ATN) are being considered in Delhi partly from a pollution/climate change angle.
2getthere expands driverless system to run on Rotterdam’s public roads
2getthere  will expand its Parkshuttle in Rotterdam region by providing six shuttle vehicles to run autonomously on public roads without a safety steward or driver on board as part of an agreement with the Capelle aan den Ijssel municipality. The project aims to increase regional capacity and will transport 500 passengers per hour in each direction with the first phase operational by next year. 

Pod Taxis In NCR: Useful But No Magic Pill For Decongestion
The government must look at a mass transit project for the Delhi-Gurgaon-Manesar corridor to help in decongesting traffic, leaving personal rapid transit systems to operate in low capacity areas like residential or industrial neighbourhoods.

The author of this article clearly does not understand that PRT has offline stations and additional stations do not slow through traffic. 
Trinity Circle, Whitefield to be linked by pod-taxis
The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has floated tenders for the city's futuristic pod-taxi project.

For the first phase, BBMP has identified a stretch of 30.5 km from the Trinity Metro station to Whitefield.

The authorities estimate it to cost Rs 50 crore a km. The total cost of the project is about Rs 2,000 crore, they said.

Budget 2018: Decongesting big cities on Nitin Gadkari's priority list
...The ministry also wants to extend support to states through a special provision from the proposed Rs 25,000 crore fund for electric bus and personal rapid transport initiatives. Of this, Rs 2,000 crore will be for the procurement of electric buses. An equal amount will be spent on promoting personal rapid transport like pod taxis...

India's first pod taxi on the way, to follow US safety norms 
NEW DELHI: The much-awaited India's first pod taxi project has moved a step closer to reality after a high-level panel recommended inviting fresh bids for the same conforming to the strictest safety standards on the lines of those prescribed by an American body. 

ATRA's efforts to modify the ASCE APM Standards to better address ATN systems seem timely based on this project.

Driving in Minnesota winters is hard — even for driverless vehicles
On Tuesday, Minnesota Department of Transportation officials showed off an autonomous shuttle bus they’re test driving at their facility near Albertville, northwest of the Twin Cities. They’ve affectionately nicknamed the vehicle, “Minnie,” an homage to Minnesota — and also to the bus’ stunted stature.

Milpitas: Council steps forward on planned pedestrian overcrossing
...Means added the 200-foot distance to cross Montague Expressway would best be covered by transportation technologies such as personal rapid transit — a computer-controlled system of small, lightweight four- to six-passenger cars or vehicles suspended on or below an elevated guide way...

Bridge vs. PRT. This article says Federal Government will not pay for PRT, but they will. They are paying for Morgantown PRT upgrades. ATRA is seeking an official Program Guidance Letter from FTA about PRT eligibility for funding.

JTA opens test track to future for self-driving transit shuttles
The self-driving vehicle starts moving as silently as the computer that operates it and the electric battery that powers it. There is none of the hiss that accompanies a train on electrified rails.

Why the Future of Batteries is Lithium and Why Their Impact Will Be Bigger Than You Think
The tremendous advances being made in lithium battery technology are being underestimated by many people, writes financial energy specialist Gerard Reid. Competitive EVs are just a few years away. They will be followed by radical improvements that will have huge implications for air and ship transport as well. 

Pod taxis: Govt to call for fresh expressions of interest this month
New Delhi: The government will seek fresh expressions of interest (EoIs) in December for launching India’s first driverless pod taxi system on a 70km stretch from Dhaula Kuan in Delhi to Manesar in Haryana.

It is notable that the ASCE APM Standards are going to apply to this ATN project in New Delhi.

Elon Musk vs. the Monorail
There is this premise that good things must be somehow painful. I think public transport is painful. It sucks. Why do you want to get on something with a lot of other people, that doesn’t leave where you want it to leave, doesn’t start where you want it to start, doesn’t end where you want it to end? And it doesn’t go all the time. It’s a pain in the ass. That’s why everyone doesn’t like it. And there’s like a bunch of random strangers, one of who might be a serial killer, OK, great. And so that’s why people like individualized transport, that goes where you want, when you want.

This article does a good job in pointing out the flaws of Musk's boring plans. It mentions PRT but does not recognize its ability to help transform transit.

Noida seeks green modes of transport for airport link
GREATER NOIDA: The Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority is all set to invite an expression of interest (EOI) from global companies to provide the best mode of transport between Greater Noida and the proposed international airport in Jewar.

Nearly a decade after its last run, memories of the Personal Rapid Transit System remain

Greenville County Proposed Automated Transport Network
The vision for an Automated Transport Network in Greenville County, South Carolina could bring modern solutions to today's transportation issues. If you'd like to learn more, please contact GCEDC Chairman Fred Payne at 864.467.7115

The above links are to articles that appear relevant to advanced transit but no guarantee is made as to their accuracy and no verification of the integrity of the associated websites has been made.

Editorial comments are in italics.
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