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Profile: Maryland Department of Transportation

PAVE: How is Maryland preparing for AVs? What steps have already been taken?

Maryland has a robust and rapidly growing autonomous systems network that earned an “Innovation Champion” ranking with “A” ratings on “advanced degrees, tech workforce, self-driving vehicles, and drones” in the Consumer Technology Association’s 2020 U.S. Innovation Scorecard.

Maryland stakeholders have explored the changing transportation landscape and worked together to safely advance strategies that integrate new technologies within our transportation ecosystem. The Maryland CAV Strategic Framework will help agencies and communities across the State to find common ground in advancing these transformational vehicle technologies.

Additionally, the Maryland CAV Working Group is critical in setting the course for the future of Connected and AVs in the State. Over the past several years, there have been informative presentations from various subject matter experts, product demonstrations from private industry, group discussions led by law enforcement, the creation of a permitting process and expression of interest form, and research explorations from various companies and academic institutions. The Maryland CAV Working Group continues to provide a one-stop-shop central point of coordination for companies and organizations seeking to test and develop CAV technology in Maryland.

Maryland’s Connected and Automated Vehicle (CAV) Milestones

PAVE: What AV deployments have taken place in Maryland?

Through its one-stop Expression of Interest process, Maryland welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with companies that are researching, testing and supporting transformational transportation technologies, and provides a collaborative forum for safety assurance in on-road testing through the HAV permit process. Currently, companies in Maryland are safely testing a variety of AVs that range from farm equipment and personal delivery devices and cars, to low speed shuttles, buses and trucks. In 2021, the Maryland legislature passed two AV-related bills including one that has Maryland preparing to launch a unified truck (platoon) process.

PAVE: What is the most important thing you’ve learned from your work with AVs?

Collaboration across a diverse field of subject matter experts is key to the successful integration of automated vehicles (AV). Maryland is embracing new transformational technologies and advancing innovations through continuing collaboration.  Maryland is proud of the diversity brought to the table by its partners and stakeholders – who hail from academia, advocacy, citizenry, industry, information technology, public safety and many other fields.  Maryland is successfully empowering its stakeholders and communities to be leaders in the AV realm, and is seeing lasting success through its open lines of communication and its ability to realign priorities as experience, research and experts fill in knowledge gaps.

Read more about Maryland’s Unmanned and Autonomous Systems: Air, Sea and Ground or Maryland is Open for Business: Connected & Automated Vehicles.

About the Public Sector Advisory Council: PAVE’s public sector partners help to guide PAVE on its mission of promoting fact-based public discussion about automated vehicles. Council members serve in a strictly advisory capacity, providing PAVE and its members with opinions and recommendations related to AV technology and its societal effects.