June 2019
From the President
Greetings! ATRA decided to consolidate Industry Group, Corporate and Academic Council memberships under the heading of Organizational Memberships at its June Board meeting.

Organizational Memberships will have annual dues of $500. Each organization will get to display its logo and corporate description on the ATRA website and will be able to name up to five employees as ATRA members who will qualify for discounts at ATRA events. There will be three Organizational Member subcategories:
  1. Industry Group
  • Same qualification requirements as existing
  • Most prominent display on the ATRA website
  1. Corporate (this includes government agencies)
  • No changes from existing
  1. Academic Council
  • All presently enrolled students of the institution would qualify for free student membership
  • There will no longer be a first-year discount rate.

ATRA also decided to invest and participate in this year’s Podcar City Conference, November 5 – 6 San Jose, California. By being an ATRA member, you will be able to save $180 on the cost of registration!

As always, enjoy reading!

Best regards,

Peter Muller, ATRA President
Upcoming Events
ATRA membership is an opportunity for you and your organization to contribute to a better world by leveraging advanced transit to improve mobility and accessibility. Membership works best for those that get involved and contribute.
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Let’s you and me go for a ride…
By ATRA Member, John Foley

We have a standing weekly appointment at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic
Centre. A few minutes before we are due to meet, I walk across the road to the station in the foyer of the Economics Building of the University of Melbourne.
On the wall are four computers. I wave my smart phone over a hot spot and
touch the computer screen to select the St.Vincent’s Hospital where you work. As I
step into the first pod car, I sit down, wave my smart phone over another hot spot, the
computer reads where I want to go, the door closes and my car smoothly moves off at 5km/h. Once clear of the foyer, it accelerates to 60km/h and enters the main stream of traffic.

History of the Advanced Transit Association (ATRA) Year by Year (27)
by J. Edward Anderson, first ATRA President.

2002 – The Twenty-Sevenh Year.

Other News
Will smart cities end the trend of individual car-ownership?
The UAE's transport infrastructure is rapidly evolving, but how will future mobility impact the residents of tomorrow's smart cities?

Despite the odd traffic jam, I thoroughly enjoy driving and the nitty-gritty of car-ownership. However, the advancements made in the mobility sector over the last few days alone have made me wonder how much longer I will need to own a car for. 

U.S. Department of Transportation Announces Availability of $60 Million for Advanced Transportation Technologies Grants
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) today published a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for states, cities and other agencies to compete for $60 million in Advanced Transportation and Congestion Management Technologies Deployment Program (ATCMTD) grants to fund new technologies that improve transportation efficiency.

Miral forecasts Yas Island visitor numbers rising 5% this year
Miral Asset Management, the Abu Dhabi government-owned developer behind Yas Island’s main leisure attractions, forecasts 5 per cent annual growth in visitor numbers in 2019 as it expands its theme parks and markets them overseas.

RTA signs deal for driverless sky pods
Dubai’s RTA signs agreement with skyTran for suspended transport systems like the Sky Pod

Dubai: Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has partnered with a global specialist firm in the field of suspended transport systems for its drive towards driverless journeys through the Sky Pods.

First shuttle without on-board attendant ready for operation
The autonomous shuttle is equipped with a brand new safety architecture to allow operation without an on-board attendant.

EasyMile has announced the launch of its new EZ10 electric driverless shuttle, which is the first shuttle of its kind ready for operations without an on-board attendant.

RTA, Skytran to bring driverless public transport to Dubai
Entities sign MoU to introduce suspended transport systems and promote mobility in the emirate.

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with personal rapid transit (PRT) developer Skytran to introduce suspended transport systems in Dubai.

Company Reimagines Public Transit with ‘Flying Solar Pods’
(TNS) — One company thinks the future of Madison’s public transit system is 20 feet above city streets in tiny solar-powered pods.

Transit X, a Boston-area company, claimed it could revolutionize city transportation with a 108-mile network of lightweight “flying solar pods” that would each carry four to five passengers all around Madison on elevated railways.

Madison Says No to Pod-Based Transit
For more than 75 years, engineers and designers have held up “personal rapid transit” — rail transit networks in which small vehicles would provide nonstop point-to-point service — as the solution to mass transit’s chief problem: making transit competitive with autos in terms of total travel time and convenience.

First responders take part in multi-agency exercises
MORGANTOWN — The West Virginia University campus was the scene of extensive exercises by first responders and university divisions to prepare for worst-case scenarios on Wednesday

Madison dodged a monorail grift and barely even noticed
The air in Wisconsin has been thick with Lyle Lanley references ever since former governor and human-shaped slime formation Scott Walker inked a deal with Foxconn that will bedevil us for decades to come. But we should have held back some of our best monorail material, because it would come in handy right now in Madison. A company called Transit X is trying to sell the city on a system of "flying solar pods" that would apparently zip people to and fro in futuristic capsules suspended from above-ground rails. As the Wisconsin State Journal reports this week, Madison transportation officials are, to put it mildly, not sold on it:

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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