Now that the city of Austin has officially declared itself a smart city—or at least smart enough to win some grant money for using still-emerging technology—the U.S. Department of Transportation is coming here to check out that claim.
On Friday, Michael Theis of the Austin Business Journal reported that a DOT team will to meet with city officials including Mayor Steve Adler to discuss Austin's Smart City Challenge bid.
Austin is one of seven finalists in the challenge—a DOT-sponsored competition that will award the winning city $50 million in grants to include new technologies—some of which are still being developed—in transportation plans, according to the ABJ report.
Self-driving cars and sensor-studded roads are some examples of the forward-looking technology they have in mind, the story adds.
The Journal story notes that the proposed use of self-driving cars dominates Austin's application for the challenge. According to ABJ, the city would use grant money to start developing an airport circulator composed of self-driving cars that move passengers between the terminal and a currently nonexistent airport transportation hub.