Joint News Release by the Land Transport Authority & JTC - Look, Hands Free! Driverless Vehicles to Ply Roads in one-north

News Releases
13 Jan 2015

        If you are in one-north, don’t be surprised if you see cars moving without their drivers having their hands on the steering wheel. This is because the testing of driverless vehicles in one-north is set to begin, with applications now open for interested parties to test out their autonomous vehicle (AV) technology.

2.      With the advancement of research and development (R&D) of AV technology worldwide, Singapore too, is exploring how AVs can meet our transport needs while preparing our environment for their eventual deployment into our land transport system. As a first step, the Land Transport Authority (LTA), in partnership with one-north master planner and developer JTC Corporation (JTC), has identified test routes in one-north connecting Biopolis, Fusionopolis and Mediapolis for on-road testing. Encompassing both light and heavy traffic routes, the 6-km long network of roads will give successful applicants the opportunity to test their vehicles’ navigation controls in a real-world environment. Please refer to the Annex for the map of the demarcated test area.


AV test-bed @ one-north

3.      Since August 2014, LTA has been working with the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) on the Singapore Autonomous Vehicle Initiative (SAVI), a joint technology platform to oversee and manage R&D and test-bedding of AV technology, applications and solutions for industry partners and stakeholders. The R&D efforts under SAVI, such as the test-bed in one-north, will support and play a role in charting the strategic direction for AV-enabled land transport mobility concepts in Singapore.

4.      Said LTA’s Chief Executive Mr Chew Men Leong: “The AV trials in one-north will give us the opportunity to learn and understand the technical capabilities and infrastructural requirements necessary for AVs to operate safely on public roads. The one-north test-bed will also enable successful applicants to develop and test their proof-of-concept for AVs in Singapore. This will raise awareness of the potential of AV technologies and pave the way for future deployment of autonomous transport modes in Singapore.”

5.      With a community of R&D and industry talents, one-north is not only a hotbed for innovation and enterprise but also a living lab for cutting edge technologies and solutions. “JTC is pleased to host this AV test-bedding initiative in one-north as it will also enhance connectivity and bring more convenience to the one-north community.  We will continue to partner companies and industries to test-bed and showcase new technologies and innovative solutions within our industrial developments,” said JTC’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr Png Cheong Boon.


Safety framework in place

6.      In the interest of the safety of all road users in one-north, LTA and JTC have drawn up a specific set of requirements which interested applicants have to adhere to when conducting on-road testing. Under these requirements, all test vehicles need to undergo a vehicle-safety assessment before they are approved to be used in trials. The test vehicles also have to be fitted with data recorders to keep track of information such as date and time of the test, the speed of the vehicle and whether the vehicle’s autonomous mode has been activated. Test vehicles are not allowed to be driven in autonomous mode out of the approved test-site boundaries.


Application Process

7.      Applicants are invited to propose their preferred test programmes and test routes within the demarcated test area, which will be assessed by JTC and LTA for their feasibility before approval is granted. On-road vehicle testing is expected to commence in March 2015. The approval licenses for test vehicles will be valid for a year, and can be renewed thereafter if required. All successful applicants will be required to submit reports on the progress of their trials and the performance of their AV technologies to LTA on a six-monthly basis.

8.      To promote awareness and facilitate easy recognition by road users, all vehicles participating in the AV trials will sport a special decal and markings. In addition, prominent signboards will be erected within one-north to display information on the AV test-bedding programme.

9.      The Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology in collaboration with National University of Singapore, A*STAR and ST Kinetics are currently in talks with LTA to apply to test their AVs in one-north. All interested parties are welcome to submit their proposals to LTA and JTC by using the application forms available on LTA’s website at:
www.lta.gov.sg/content/ltaweb/en/roads-and-motoring/managing-traffic-and-congestion/intelligent-transport-systems/savi.html