Community Issues

"Pittsburgh Principles" Outline Future of Self-Driving Cars in Pittsburgh

Mayor signs executive order, joined by industry representatives.


Mayor Bill Peduto signed an executive order this morning, outlining an agreement between the City of Pittsburgh and autonomous vehicle companies testing self-driving cars on the city's streets. Peduto said the "Pittsburgh Principles" are the first of their kind for any city in the country.

Peduto held a press conference at the David L. Lawerence Convention Center, where he was joined by representatives of the city's Department of Mobility and Performance and Carnegie Mellon University, as well as autonomous driving companies Uber, Argo AI, Aptiv, and Aurora Innovations.

"We want to be able to work hand in hand with the autonomous care industry to create a leading city again," Peduto said.

"We want a partnership built on trust, clear understanding of mission and shared values."

The order outlines regulations on the testing of self-driving cars on public streets, and the expectations of communication and data-sharing. Industry representatives said they were excited by the potential of the emerging technology and emphasized how important the city of Pittsburgh was to its growth. They said today's announcement was an important step in the partnership.

"We're sharing the shared space of the roadways together. Let's do the right thing," said Peter Rander, President of Argo AI. The autonomous driving company is backed by Ford Motor Co., and is reportedly working out a $1.7 billion investment deal with Volkswagen .

"This order and the guidelines help to protect the public while enabling this technology born in Pittsburgh 35 years ago to be tested and matured right here," said Raj Rajkumar, a professor at Carnegie Mellon. He said the the industry would attract jobs and talent to Pittsburgh.

Uber resumed testing of self-driving cars in the Strip District in December after a nine-month hiatus when a pedestrian was struck and killed in Tempe, AZ. At the time, Peduto called for a 25 mph speed limit for testing to be limited to daytime hours.

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