NCDOT provides grants for university transportation research projects

Much of the research will focus on new technology, which is changing the transportation industry significantly

December 18, 2019
new transportation technologies

The North Carolina DOT (NCDOT) this week selected research programs at three public universities to each receive $1 million grants to study future transportation challenges in the state.

North Carolina State University, N.C. A&T State University, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will spearhead the multi-university research initiatives over the next three years. These new, three-year research programs will begin in early 2020.

The research initiative is known as the University Transportation Centers of Excellence. The three universities leading the research will work with transportation experts at Appalachian State University, North Carolina Central University, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Duke University, and Fayetteville State University. Much of the research will focus on new technology, which is changing the transportation industry significantly. 

“North Carolina is uniquely positioned to perform research on transportation technology and enable the progress and improvement of transportation systems while improving on the mobility and safety of our citizens,” NCDOT Chief Deputy Secretary David Howard said in a statement. “This research should lead to North Carolina having competitive advantages in a global economy.”

N.C. A&T will lead a study on connected and autonomous vehicle technology and the state’s preparedness for this technology. The NC-CAV Center will be headquartered at the university’s research campus in Greensboro and will have a dedicated test track for autonomous vehicles. Greensboro and its transportation department are also contributing funding to the center.

The University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill’s Highway Safety Research Center will focus on the impact of automated vehicles and advanced technology on safety, policy, mobility, and accessibility. The UNC research team will also study how autonomous vehicles will impact North Carolina’s economy and other people ​using the road.

North Carolina State University’s Institute for Transportation Research and Education will research traffic prediction, the role of autonomous vehicle fleet management, and improving convenient, reliable, and safe transportation options to rural communities and underserved individuals.

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SOURCE: North Carolina DOT

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