The Challenges of planning for autonomous mobility in Australia

Robyn Dowling, Jennifer Kent

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review


    Transport planning in the twenty-first century is facing diversifying challenges. While there is some evidence that the car is lessening its hold on urban lives, desires for mobility unencumbered by the timetables or routes of others remain strong. Accordingly, there has also been unprecedented growth in non-car modes of travel that are able to mimic the independence offered by the private car. These include conventional modes, such as walking and cycling, but also new technologies, such as carsharing and motorised scooters. In this paper we explore whether and how urban transport planning in Australia is recognising and governing ‘autonomous mobility’. We begin by developing a conceptual model of autonomous mobility that identifies its core characteristics and present a typology of autonomous mobility that illustrates ways in which various transport modes (including cars, public transport, cycles, walking and newer alternatives) meet these characteristics. The paper then turns to an analysis of transport policy and asks: how is autonomous mobility being imagined and planned for in Australia? Focusing on the example of NSW, we suggest that though this planning continues to privilege the motor vehicle, some shifts toward recognising and encouraging newer modes as viable transport solutions can be identified in specific local government areas. The paper concludes with signposts for ways in which autonomous mobility can be better incorporated into mainstream transport policy.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationSOAC 2013
    Subtitle of host publicationState of Australian Cities National Conference : Conference Proceedings and Powerpoint Presentations
    EditorsKristian Ruming, Bill Randolph, Nicole Gurran
    Place of PublicationSydney
    Number of pages11
    ISBN (Print)1740440331
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    EventState of Australian Cities Conference (6th : 2013) - Sydney, Australia
    Duration: 26 Nov 201329 Nov 2013


    ConferenceState of Australian Cities Conference (6th : 2013)


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