Ann Arbor SPARK has partnered with May Mobility and Mcity to officially announce the launch of A2GO, a new autonomous vehicle (AV) shuttle service. The free shuttle service will be available to the public starting October 11, 2021.
The free shuttle service was announced during the Ann Arbor SPARK annual meeting on May 18. The project came together in part to a grant through the mobility efforts of the state of Michigan. Additional partners on A2GO include !important Safety Technologies, 4M, Office of Future Mobility and Electrification, and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.
“We are thrilled to be launching a new shuttle service here in our hometown so that our friends, family, and the entire community of Ann Arbor can experience our self-driving technology first hand,” said Edwin Olson, founder and CEO of May Mobility.
May Mobility will operate a fleet of five autonomous, shared, on-demand vehicles as part of the A2GO deployment. Four hybrid-electric Lexus RX 450h vehicles (with three passenger capacity) and one Polaris GEM fully electric vehicle (with capacity for one wheelchair passenger) will operate in a service area. The area will connect Kerrytown, the University of Michigan campus, and the State Street corridor. The free May Mobility app will be available closer to the launch date and will be necessary to use A2GO.
“This deployment demonstrates the collaboration happening in Michigan across public and private sectors that are driving impactful transportation solutions for individuals and creating an environment where companies like May Mobility can find long-term growth and success,” said Trevor Pawl, Chief Mobility Officer for the state of Michigan. “A2GO combines Michigan’s opportunistic approach to the advancement of new mobility technology with our commitment to improving the quality of life for people across the state and we are excited to help bring this innovative shuttle service from May Mobility to Ann Arbor.”
A2GO is May Mobility’s eighth shuttle deployment since the company began operations. May Mobility is currently operating shuttles in Grand Rapids, MI; Arlington, TX; and Hiroshima, Japan, and will be launching in Indianapolis, IN at the end of June.
The A2GO service requires the support of the community and strategic partners with common goals of making equitable and sustainable public transportation available. This unique service demonstrates how the mobility landscape is evolving, with patterns representing transport, safety, land use, and economic development. This project also engages !important Safety, a Montreal-based company that opened its US Headquarters in Ann Arbor SPARK in 2019. A2GO provides an opportunity to advance their pedestrian safety technology, which communicates with nearby AVs to prevent collisions.
The A2GO service is another example of Ann Arbor SPARK’s work to further the community’s place as a mobility leader.
For more information, check out the Ann Arbor SPARK website.