Minnesota speeds up planning for self-driving cars

17 Apr 2018

Self-driving cars will eventually hit the pavement in Minnesota, and state officials want our roads and laws to be ready.

Gov. Mark Dayton formed a group to delve into the tricky policy and infrastructure questions that will accompany the arrival of autonomous vehicles. The 15-member advisory council will take up traffic regulations, privacy concerns and many other matters, with policy recommendations due to the DFL governor by December.

The creation of the council elevates what has been growing chatter among local academics, planners and others about self-driving cars. At a Wednesday news conference, Transportation Commissioner Charlie Zelle noted that vehicles with autonomous features, such as automatic parallel parking, are already on the road. Other cars on the market now feature automatic freeway steering and braking.

"The era of automated and connected vehicles isn't way off in the future," he said. "It's actually happening right now."

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