Cooper Martin presented preliminary results from the National Leauge of Cities report "Technology and Mobility," which is the first results from their research project "What is the City of the Future." For the pas 100 years, cities have been designed around teh concept of a human driven automobile. This paradigm may be changing in the next 10-20 years with the advent of driverless cars and teh shifting paradigm to shared use, rather than individual ownership.
Automobile usage and storage present one of the most significant infrastructure investments of a city. It is estimated that 20% of land in a city is dedicated to roads and another 20% to parking. A 10% reduction in automobiles was calculated to provide 500,00 acres of reusable land in the US alone. A recent study in Lisbon showed that a driverless fleet of cars would result in an 80% reduction in automobiles required. This would free up significant land in cities as well as reduce automobile emissions.
Preliminary results from the NLC study suggest availability of smart and self-driving cars in 2020, with significant adoption in 2030.
While the benefits of driverless technology on our cities appears immense, the disruption it proposes is just as striking.