A fascinating new simulation finds that self-driving cars will terraform cities: 90% of cars will be eliminated, acres of land will open up, and commute times will drop 10%. A team of transportation scientists at the Organization for Cooperation and Development took data on actual trips in Lisbon, Portugal and looked at how a fleet of self-driving, shared “taxibots” would change city landscape.
These taxibots, the researchers imagine, are a marriage of mass carpooling and UPS delivery intelligence: they constantly roam throughout cities and match carpool routes with mathematical elegance. “Nearly the same mobility can be delivered with 10% of the cars. Taxibots combined with high-capacity public transport could remove 9 out of every 10 cars in a mid-sized European city,” the paper concludes.
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