New York state’s first autonomous vehicle program has been launched by Optimus Ride, a self-driving vehicle technology company. Six AVs will be deployed to transport passengers at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, an industrial park with more than 400 manufacturing businesses and 10,000 employees onsite.
Dr. Ryan Chin, CEO and co-founder of Optimus Ride, says: “Launching our self-driving vehicle system in New York at the Brooklyn Navy Yard is yet another validation that not only is Optimus Ride’s system a safe, efficient means of transportation, but also that autonomous vehicles can solve real-world problems in structured environments – today.”
He adds: “Our system will provide access to and experience with autonomy for thousands of people, helping to increase acceptance and confidence of this new technology, which helps move the overall industry forward.”
David Ehrenberg, President and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation, says: “We are excited to bring the future of transportation to New York with Optimus Ride, and provide the 10,000 employees across the Yard and the Brooklyn community with greater access to convenient mobility.”
Optimus Ride’s AVs are expected to transport around 500 passengers per day and more than 16,000 passengers per month around the industrial park. The company says, initially, there will be a safety driver and software operator in the vehicle while in operation.
Optimus Ride is based in Boston and is a spin-off from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.