Autonomous shuttles hit downtown Grand Rapids streets

Posted at 1:33 PM, Jul 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-25 17:39:26-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The City of Grand Rapids has a new way of getting around downtown.

Four electric, self-driving shuttles are now cruising downtown streets. While the shuttles are autonomous, there is a "driver" inside when they are on the streets.

The shuttles can seat six people and will move people around the DASH West Route which goes through downtown, the west side and the Heartside Business District.  Rides are also free.  The shuttles will run Tuesdays through Fridays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

A shuttle should arrive for pickup every four to six minutes.

There are 20 passenger stops on the 3.2-mile loops. The shuttles navigate themselves through 30 traffic lights and 12 turns.  The maximum speed for the shuttles is 25 mph.

The "Grand Rapids Autonomous Vehicle Initiative" will be used in the city through summer of 2020. If you use the service, you are encouraged to post your experience on social media using the hashtag #AVGR.

For shuttle times and details about the initiative, stop by this link.