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OLYMPIA – Emerging technologies that reduce carbon, reduce the amount of time to get goods to consumers and move agricultural goods to market more efficiently will be explored at the Washington State Transportation Commission’s October meeting. Commissioners also will discuss their next round of recommendations to the state Legislature about steps needed to prepare for autonomous vehicles operating on public roadways.

The two-day meeting starts at 9 a.m. both Tuesday, Oct. 19, and Wednesday, Oct. 20. Due to limitations on the size of gatherings in response to COVID-19, this meeting will be conducted virtually using Zoom Webinar. People interested in attending can register on the commission’s website: www.wstc.wa.gov/agendas/2021/10/07/meeting-agenda-october-19-20-2021/. The meeting will be broadcast live on TVW at www.tvw.org.

Tuesday morning kicks off with a work session co-sponsored by the ACES Northwest Network, and the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region. The ACES Northwest Network is focused on developing and promoting autonomous-connected-electric-shared mobility technologies. A panel of policy and industry leaders will explore a number of topics including: trucking and rail automation, including how electrification is revolutionizing logistics; advanced air mobility, focusing on what’s taking flight in our state; and getting perspectives on agricultural automation.

Tuesday afternoon, the commission will hear from a panel representing transit, counties, cities, ports, and the private sector on how the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact transportation and operations. 

With the significant growth in home delivery of goods, increasing the demand being placed on city streets and neighborhoods, the commission will hear from the University of Washington’s Supply Chain Transportation & Logistics Center about how this growth has accelerated a paradigm shift in freight movement. They will also brief the commission about their efforts to engage private sector industries in researching and the pilot testing of low-emission, last-mile delivery solutions in the Puget Sound. 

On Wednesday, the commission will receive an update on the 2021 work of the Autonomous Vehicle Work Group and determine their next round of recommendations to the Legislature.  The work group is charged with identifying policy and regulatory needs to accommodate autonomous vehicles on our public roadways. An overview of the work group’s efforts and explorations in 2021 will be covered and the commission’s report of findings and recommendations to the Legislature will be discussed. 

Public comment will be taken on Wednesday, Oct. 20 at 11:25 a.m. People wishing to provide comments can sign up by posting their name in the Q&A box that can be found on-screen during the virtual meeting. Written comments can also be submitted via email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For more information about the commission and a complete meeting agenda, visit: www.wstc.wa.gov/.

Free, temporary internet access is available to those who do not have broadband service in locations throughout the state. To find the nearest Drive-In WiFi Hotspot visit: www.commerce.wa.gov/building-infrastructure/washington-state-drive-in-wifi-hotspots-location-finder/.

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