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Priority 3: Transport services

Priority 3: Transport services

Accelerating towards the future of mobility

By embracing technology and innovation today, we can open up an exciting future of personalised passenger transport for customers, new freight services, and smarter mobility that fully unlock the value of investments in the transport network. 

We have fully automated Sydney Metro trains ready to start operating in 2019, and an automated passenger shuttle already being trialled at Sydney Olympic Park. Regional shuttle trials in Armidale and Coffs Harbour will also test the potential for CAVs to improve customer outcomes and operate as part of an integrated regional transport network in regional centres.

The freight industry already uses automation at container ports and in distribution centres, such as Patrick’s automated terminal at Port Botany, which uses AutoStrads, or automated straddles, to automate the safe unloading and movement of containers.

Wider introduction of automated vehicles – such as automated passenger shuttles, buses, trucks and commercial ridesharing fleets – could deliver safer and more reliable services to customers, reduce operating costs and allow new services to be offered in areas where they are not currently viable.

Customer expectations of transport are increasing. Flexible service models such as ridesharing and carsharing are already disrupting traditional services and offering new choices to customers. Automation and digital connectivity are changing the way we consume transport, bringing more flexibility, choice and integration.

Figure 12: Image source 33

CAV technology will support emerging mobility services by increasing their affordability and availability, for example in the form of automated ridesharing and first/last mile passenger shuttles, and integrating with other transport modes.

When used in shared ride services, such as on-demand transport, ridesharing (e.g. UberPOOL) and carpooling (e.g. Liftango), CAVs offer affordable and personalised point to point transport that meets growing demand for travel, eases congestion and offers a viable alternative to the high costs of private car ownership.

Freight and logistics also stand to benefit from CAVs, which could improve safety and efficiency, and cut operating costs. NSW is already trialling freight priority technology using connected trucks in a Premier’s Innovation Initiative Freight Signal Priority trial, to test its ability to ease congestion. Small automated vehicles or footpath-based drones, such as the one trialled by Australia Post for mail delivery, could cut the cost of last mile parcel delivery 32, and offer faster and more flexible delivery options.


Priority 3: Transport Services

In the next five years, NSW will aim to:

  1. Have introduced expanded operations, at scale, of connected and highly automated vehicle (level 4) services that support the most efficient movement of people and goods, and the creation of better places and amenity across NSW

Trials and projects:

3.1 Complete the Smart Shuttle trial at the Sydney Olympic Park, and the regional CAV trials in Coffs Harbour and Armidale

3.2 Undertake an automated ridesharing service trial in NSW

3.3 Partner with industry and universities to develop further CAV trials, focusing on: 

  • 'turn-up-and-go' high-capacity bus services
  • flexible and on-demand services
  • first and last-mile service connections to public transport, including linkages with commuter car parks
  • services that improve accessibility for older people and people with a disability, including community transport
  • last-mile freight delivery services
  • heavy vehicle truck platooning 

3.4 Investigate the potential for automation of freight movements between ports and inland terminals, including heavy vehicle platooning


3.5 Take account of CAVs in developing and implementing a Last Mile Freight Policy, to ensure CAVs can support the optimisation of freight movements in centres33

3.6 Update fleet procurement and service contracting policies to incentivise the use of connected and automated buses and shuttles for public transport services

3.7 Work with universities and industry partners to research new connected and automated mobility services, such as ridesharing, MaaS and carsharing, and their integration into our future transport network

3.8 Work with NSW Department of Industry to understand implications of CAVs on future skills and workforce

To support actions recommended in the NSW State Infrastructure Strategy 2018-2038, we will also:

3.9 Investigate opportunities for automated bus rapid transit on the North West and Liverpool- Parramatta T-ways and other key transit corridors

Six principles for Future Transport

The Future Transport 2056 Strategy is focused on six key principles for the future of mobility in the state, which together aim to positively impact the economy, communities and environment of NSW.

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