ITS America Update on U.S. DOT V2X AnnouncementStatement by ITS America President and CEO Laura Chace
ITS America President & CEO Laura Chace shared the following statement from today’s V2X Summit:
“Today, the United States Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) hosted the vehicle-to-everything (V2X) stakeholder community at the University of Michigan for their third V2X Summit. At this event, U.S. DOT leadership made three major announcements designed to support rapid deployment of V2X technologies.
First, Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced that U.S. DOT would be providing $40 million for a new V2X program titled “Saving Lives with Connectivity: Accelerating Vehicle to Everything (V2X) Deployment.” This exciting new program is designed to fund V2X deployment at scale at two locations within the United States, and will represent a targeted investment aimed at demonstrating the tangible safety benefits that these technologies can provide. In announcing the new program, Secretary Buttigieg noted that “connected vehicle technology has the potential to save lives, and we are proud to provide this funding to help accelerate its development.” We commend U.S. DOT for committing to this new discretionary grant program. While we support these needed steps, we need to continue to progress and employ the findings from the Accelerator to speed deployment to improve safety for all road users.
Second, Federal Highways Administrator Shailen Bhatt announced the release of the Department’s draft National V2X Deployment Plan, a much anticipated document which outlines the critical steps and key performance indicators that U.S. DOT has identified as their path to supporting full, interoperable V2X deployment nationwide. The National V2X Deployment Plan describes how deployments can start now and defines the specific actions needed across stakeholder groups. It also identifies support available from the U.S. DOT and other sources. This Plan provides stakeholders with vital information to accelerate investment, research, and deployment in V2X technologies and helps stakeholders plan near-term and mid-term priorities while providing market certainty. This Plan helps build technical and institutional capacity for future deployment needs. The Plan seeks to reduce uncertainty among all stakeholders working towards the vision of a nationwide, interoperable V2X ecosystem. U.S. DOT officials repeatedly encouraged public feedback on this draft plan, and intend to further update the plan through the end of the year. It does, however, represent a crucial milestone in the Department’s leadership on V2X adoption, and will serve as an important roadmap for public and private V2X deployers looking to align their efforts with U.S. DOT’s vision and support, as well as an essential indicator of further regulatory certainty in this space. ITS America looks forward to continuing to engage with USDOT on efforts to finalize this document, and would be grateful for any member feedback to help guide those conversations.
Finally, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Acting Administrator Ann Carlson announced that NHTSA will withdraw their 2017 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would have mandated the inclusion of vehicle-to-vehicle communications capabilities in new vehicles, utilizing dedicated short-range radio communications (DSRC). While this might initially seem like a step backwards, it instead reflects the new focus on cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) technology as the primary method of communication within the 5.9 GHz band, and allows NHTSA to consider new methods to encourage the adoption of these technologies. Acting Administrator Carlson noted that “this doesn’t take us out of the game, this puts us back in the game and represents a shift to a new technology.”
With these three announcements, we can see the path to realizing the safety benefits these technologies are poised to provide, but we aren’t there yet. ITS America and our members are grateful for the work being done at U.S. DOT and look forward to continuing to work shoulder to shoulder with our federal partners to deploy V2X technologies and thereby make roads safer, increase our global competitiveness, and move us closer to the transportation network of the future.”
About ITS America
The Intelligent Transportation Society of America advances the research and deployment of intelligent transportation technologies to save lives, improve mobility, promote sustainability, and increase efficiency and productivity. Our vision is a better future transformed by transportation technology and innovation: Safer, Greener, Smarter. For All. For more information, please visit www.itsa.org.