Intel is highly encouraged by the enactment today of the most innovative and forward-thinking highway bill in history, Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act). With this milestone legislation, Congress explicitly recognizes the increasing importance of new transportation technologies to the U.S. economy and global competitiveness and “the FAST Act makes several changes to ensure that federal regulations promote innovation, not stand in its way.” (Joint Explanatory Statement of the Conference Committee)
By promoting innovation, the FAST Act paves the way for America’s global leadership in the rapidly evolving transportation sector. Pro-innovation implementation will advance the nation’s intelligent transportation future – enabling autonomous vehicle technologies, cellular-enabled vehicle connectivity and vast computing intelligence – to cooperatively make driving safer and more efficient.
Most importantly, we commend Congressmen Shuster and DeFazio, Senators Inhofe and Boxer, and members of the Conference Committee for ensuring that technology neutrality and market competition are cornerstones of America’s intelligent transportation future:
“The FAST Act ensures that these programs are implemented and Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) are deployed in a technology neutral manner. The Act promotes technology neutral policies that accelerate vehicle and transportation safety research, development and deployment by promoting innovation and competitive market-based outcomes, while using federal funds efficiently and leveraging private sector investment across the automotive, transportation and technology sectors.” (Joint Explanatory Statement of the Conference Committee)
Technology neutrality and market competition encourage private investment and will ensure that consumers and businesses reap the benefits of the most advanced and scalable vehicle-safety and transportation solutions as technology evolves.
We further applaud policymakers for recognizing the immense safety benefits of autonomous vehicle technologies and making these technologies eligible for federal research and deployment funding. We similarly commend policymakers for recognizing the enormous benefits that cellular technologies can offer for collision avoidance communications between vehicles. With next-generation cellular standards activities underway and technologies like LTE-Advanced and 5G poised for commercialization in the near future, it is fitting that the FAST Act makes cellular technologies eligible for federal research and deployment funding.
Finally, we are delighted that the FAST Act promotes the importance of the Internet of Things to the future of our nation’s transportation ecosystem and enables USDOT to undertake a study on the potential benefits of the Internet of Things to improve transportation services. Intel looks forward to working with Congress, USDOT, the Administration and our industry partners to realize the FAST Act’s innovation goals and drive America’s global leadership in the intelligent transportation future.