Today, 3M and the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) announced they are partnering to utilize connected-vehicle technologies along more than three miles of I-75. Using roadway solutions from 3M, the current I-75 work zone in Oakland County will be transformed over the course of four months to improve safety for drivers and to test advanced vehicle-to-infrastructure technologies on the connected and autonomous vehicles of the future.
The I-75 Modernization project will position Michigan to be among the first states to test connected-vehicle infrastructure at this level of scale. As vehicles become increasingly automated and connected, existing road infrastructure must be updated to ensure safety and reliability of this emerging technology. Signs, pavement markings, temporary traffic controls and vehicle identification systems need to be designed and implemented to pave the way for the data-driven environment of the cars and roadways of tomorrow.
“Technology is transforming not only how we live, but also how we drive,” said Michigan Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle, in a release. “Michigan is globally recognized as the leader in automated vehicle research and technology, and through our Planet M initiative, we have solidified ourselves as the hub for mobility innovation. In the spirit of Michigan’s commitment to collaboration in the smart mobility sector, we are excited to partner with 3M on this project to make the concept of connected roadways and autonomous driving a reality.”
3M will be providing MDOT with advanced all-weather lane markings, retroreflective signs with smart sign technology and DSRC (dedicated short-range communication) devices for vehicle-to-infrastructure communications. The updated, modern materials will allow for redundancy and greater machine vision, as well as improved driver safety on the roadways. Additionally, 3M will provide work crews ANSI-compliant apparel with 3M Scotchlite Reflective Material, to ensure proper worker safety throughout the project.