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The Ride-to-Autonomy project is part of the European 2020 work program “Communications Networks, Content and Technology”, which has as its object the promotion of pilot projects in the field of autonomous driving, applied to models of sustainable and intelligent urban mobility. DIEF – Department of Engineering Enzo Ferrari of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, is the only Italian partner of the European consortium which has been the beneficiary of the funding with a proposal to experiment with an autonomous-driving shuttle in Reggio Emilia, which sees the participation of the local Municipality, Local Motors, Max Mara Fashion Group, Real Mutua Group and Unindustria.
The aim of the project is to experiment a mobility service in a real context, oriented towards urban intermodal commuting, connecting the Reggio Emilia Medio-Padana High Speed Railway Station and the Max Mara Campus. This model intends to investigate the potential of autonomous driving in responding to the needs of mobility in solving the so-called “last mile”, through a smart and green solution, where new information technologies enable a more inclusive and sustainable transport model from an environmental point of view.
The overall duration of the project is 1 year, starting from the preparatory phase that began in April 2021, while the experimentation of the shuttle will instead have an operational duration of 2 months, at the beginning of 2022. At the end of this, questionnaires and analyzes will be carried out on the user experience of users to detect benefits and problems, as well as the perceived presence of the vehicle by other road users.
The results of the research, structured in a multi and trans-disciplinary form, aim to transfer application precipitates on several fields, ranging from that of information technologies to the automotive, transport and urban design sectors. The contribution of the different skills in their respective fields contributes to the search for solutions for the ecological transition of urban systems and economies, in the creation of inclusive and enabling services to extend and guarantee the right to mobility in the smart city.