Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) kicked off the Little Roady autonomous vehicle pilot project in Providence. The free service will be the focus of a research project to help the Department better understand the opportunities and challenges that come with integrating this new technology into RIDOT’s transportation planning. The research will help improve transit and provide information for communities, the workforce, and policymakers.

This experimental service will operate seven days a week, from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., with 12 stops between Olneyville Square and Providence Station. The Little Roady shuttles will run on a continuous, 5.3-mile loop on low-speed roads with an average wait time of about 10 minutes. Trip time will be about 20-25 minutes each way from Providence Station to Olneyville Square.

Rhode Island Transportation Innovation Partnership (TRIP) includes many partner agencies and governmental entities, including the City of Providence, the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA), the Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles and the Quonset Development Corporation. The research team is made up of representatives from Brown University, 3×3 Design, Stae, and Bits and Atoms.