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February 15, 2019 Comments Off on Brookfield Gives Autonomous Vehicles a Test Drive Views: 790 National News

Brookfield Gives Autonomous Vehicles a Test Drive

At a few luxury apartment complexes, renter amenities include access to on-call ride-sharing fleets. Beginning in June, office tenants at Brookfield Properties’ Halley Rise $1.4-billion mixed-use development in Reston, VA will be able to take themselves for a ride—as passengers.

Brookfield has partnered with Optimus Ride to provide tenants at Halley Rise’s One Reston Crescent and Two Reston Crescent office buildings with access to self-driving mobility geofenced within the development site. Tenants will be able to use Optimus Ride’s reservation system and on-demand ride services.

“We will deploy our self-driving system at Brookfield’s Halley Rise location this summer to provide users with autonomous mobility access between office buildings, as we continue to scale our business,” said Ryan Chin, CEO of Optimus Ride, an autonomous vehicle technology startup based in Boston. “In the future, we will advance our partnership by deploying our self-driving systems at additional Brookfield sites around the world.”

The launch at Halley Rise will be small in scale and limited in scope. During the initial phase, a total of three self-driving vehicles will remain completely within the Halley Rise development site, and transport tenants from their office buildings to parking lots at the site on a designated, geofenced route.

An operations team onsite will actively monitor the fleet service—i.e. they’ll ride in the vehicles and take over operations in the event something goes wrong—along with providing maintenance, cleaning, charging and updating of the self-driving vehicle fleet.

“Optimus Ride is committed to the goals of Vision Zero, a multi-national road traffic safety initiative that aims to achieve a road network with no fatalities or serious injuries involving road traffic,” the company says. “Optimus Ride’s vehicles are programmed to adhere to Vision Zero speeds,” limited to 30 mph.

The Halley Rise partnership may be Optimus Ride’s first with a multinational owner/developer, but it’s not the company’s first rodeo. In November 2017, it began an 18-month pilot program with LStar Ventures to provide autonomous vehicle service within the developer’s 1,550-acre Union Point in South Weymouth, MA, 12 miles south of Boston.

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