Mobility Transformation Facility in Ann Arbor

The Engineering Society of Detroit sponsored a tour of the University of Michigan Transportation Center facility last week.  The facility provides a complex urban environment for the testing of connected and automated vehicles.  The testing environment includes a traffic circle and a roundabout.  Both of these roadway geometric features pose challenges to driverless vehicles.  Other roadway features available for testing include a brick paver road, gravel roadways, signalized intersections, and a metal bridge deck.

The urban a suburban streets simulate real-world conditions with sidewalks, crosswalks, ADA ramps, raised medians, street lights, tree shading, parallel and diagonal parking, a bus turnout/stop, and building facades.  The state route portion provides a railroad crossing complete with railroad signals, bells, and stop bars; as well as a cable barrier, temporary and permanent pavement markings, and a simulated tunnel.  The tunnel’s primary purpose will be to block the automated and connected vehicles from satellite signals.