New Michigan Law Sets Aside Roadways for Automated Vehicles

July 27, 2022

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed a law that gives the state’s Department of Transportation the power to designate some roadways for exclusive use by automated vehicles.

According to a report by Interlochen Public Radio (IPR), the new policy also enables MDOT to work with a third party to develop the technology that will make these roadways possible.

The bill received bipartisan support, and the main sponsor of the bill was state Senator Ken Horn (R-Frankenmuth).

“Michigan put the world on wheels, but the automotive industry as we know it is beginning to take new forms. We need to solidify Michigan’s role in the future of vehicle technology as well, and this legislation does just that,” Horn said to IPR.

Though the bill received support from both sides of the aisle, some groups, like the motorcycle group ABATE of Michigan, urged lawmakers to focus the pressing needs of the state’s current infrastructure.

However, supporters of the bill have cautioned that it could take several years for automated roadway technology to be ready for large scale use.

The new law allows for collaboration between MDOT and automated vehicle system developers. The bill stemmed from recommendations by the state Council on Future Mobility and Electrification. 

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