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Jacksonville Transportation Authority Announces Groundbreaking of Autonomous Innovation Center (AIC) as Hub for U2C Program with Balfour Beatty's V2R Team
[May 29, 2024]

Jacksonville Transportation Authority Announces Groundbreaking of Autonomous Innovation Center (AIC) as Hub for U2C Program with Balfour Beatty's V2R Team


The Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA), together with the Balfour Beatty Vision 2 Reality (V2R) team, including Beep, Inc., today announces their groundbreaking launch of the Autonomous Innovation Center (AIC) at LaVilla, a vibrant hub centered around an advanced command-and-control center that will store, service, monitor and maintain the city's electric, autonomous mobility system.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20240529757909/en/

The AIC is an integral part of the upcoming Bay Street Innovation Corridor (BSIC), Phase I of the Ultimate Urban Circulator (U2C) program-a comprehensive initiative to modernize and expand transportation options in the Downtown Jacksonville area and introduce autonomous vehicles (AVs) into JTA's transportation system. Establishing an innovative mobility network to connect a rapidly developing downtown with neighborhoods on both sides of the St. Johns River is a critical cornerstone to revitalizing the area.

"The groundbreaking of the AIC is a culmination of hard work to provide the City of Jacksonville with enhanced connectivity through autonomous mobility at-scale," said JTA CEO Nat Ford. "Throughout this project, JTA has leveraged its partners' experience and expertise, and this groundbreaking is a visible symbol of our collective, forward-thinking progress. Today, we are one step closer in realizing our shared goal of providing a transportation network that is sustainable, adaptable and places Jacksonville as a city at the forefront of AV mobility."

As lead of the V2R team, Balfour Beatty will build the two-story IC on an existing parking lot with a secure perimeter. The facility's top floor will feature the command-and-control center. The first floor includes maintenance bays for vehicle service and covered AV parking with charging stations. Balfour Beatty's full V2R team includes Superior Construction Company Southeast, Beep, WGI, Inc., Urban SDK, Miller Electric, and Grayline to deliver the AIC project.



"Balfour Beatty has assembled a team of experts and partners with specialized capabilities to support JTA's U2C program components," said Dave Campbell, Balfour Beatty operations director in Florida. "With our expertise in design-build projects, Balfour Beatty will lead the V2R team in successfully delivering the state-of-the-art AIC which is the gateway to making this transformative transportation solution a reality. We look forward to working with our industry partners, our client and the community in providing a modernized, innovative and sustainable transit system in LaVilla."

Leading shared autonomous mobility solutions provider, Beep, is providing insights around the command-and-control center and design as it relates to managing autonomous vehicle systems to ensure the JTA and its community are planning for key features across safety, sustainability and efficiency.


"The introduction of the AIC is a major milestone for this industry-leading program and a reflection of how the JTA, Beep, and entire U2C team are revolutionizing the integration and management of autonomous mobility networks in our communities," said Beep CEO Joe Moye. "Beep's initial autonomous vehicles on the BSIC will be supervised and monitored through the AIC's command-and-control operation, serving as a blueprint for providing a safe and reliable transportation solution for Jacksonville residents and visitors. In addition, the command center is designed for scale, enabling the orchestration of future mobility networks with over 100 vehicles to connect key areas of the city, such as Brooklyn, Springfield, San Marco, and Riverside. We join the community in celebrating the future of transportation right here in Jacksonville."

Built for the community, the AIC also includes an open terrace that allows for guided tours and educational opportunities that showcase the program in-action with an optimal viewing area of the AVs arriving and departing the facility. Additionally, in partnership with LaVilla Heritage Trail & Gateways, an area outside of the secure perimeter will be provided along Bay Street for food trucks.

To learn more about the JTA's innovative U2C program, visit u2c.jtafla.com.

About Balfour Beatty US

Balfour Beatty is an industry-leading provider of general contracting, at-risk construction management and design-build services for public and private sector clients across the United States. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, the company performs heavy civil, rail and a broad variety of vertical construction. The company is held by Balfour Beatty plc (LSE: BBY), who is a global leader in international infrastructure with interests in Hong Kong, UK and US. Balfour Beatty US is ranked among the top domestic building contractors in the United States by Engineering News-Record. To learn more, visit www.balfourbeattyus.com.

About the Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA)

The Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) is an independent state agency serving Jacksonville, Florida and Northeast Florida with multi-modal responsibilities. The JTA provides varied mass public transit services, and is a builder of roads, bridges and other infrastructure to enhance mobility in Jacksonville. Public transportation services include BRT and regular bus service, paratransit, the St. Johns River Ferry, Skyway APM, and other mobility and on-demand services in Duval, Clay, Baker, Nassau and St. Johns counties. To learn more, visit www.jtafla.com.

About Beep

Beep, Inc. delivers the next generation of autonomous, electric, shared mobility networks through its AI-enabled AutonomOS™ software platform and mobility-as-a-service offerings. Specializing in planning, deploying and managing autonomous transportation services for private and public communities, Beep safely connects people, places, goods and services with solutions that reduce congestion, eliminate carbon emissions, improve roadway safety and enable mobility for all. Beep utilizes artificial intelligence insights and vast data learnings from its deployments to enhance and advance the safety, rider experience, and operating capabilities of autonomous transportation platforms. For more information visit www.ridebeep.com.


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