Rep. Lipinski Introduces Future Transportation Research and Innovation Act

Congressman Dan Lipinski (IL-3) has introduced H.R. 2886, the Future Transportation Research and Innovation for Prosperity (TRIP) Act, to support innovative technologies that have the potential to fundamentally alter mobility in America and beyond.

“Surface transportation used to be rather staid and unimaginative, but today the very concept of ‘mobility’ is being reinvented through research, innovation, and entrepreneurship,” said Rep. Lipinski.  “Rapidly advancing automation, connectivity, and information technologies are creating incredible opportunities for transportation innovation.  We need to develop innovative ways to improve safety, ease congestion, improve personal mobility, and cut energy use.  As a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, as well as the Ranking Member on the Research and Technology Subcommittee of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee, I am working to ensure that we are developing these technologies effectively in the United States.”

Lipinski’s Future TRIP Act would:

·         Establish priorities for research and deployment of technologies for connected and autonomous vehicles that promise to make commutes safer and more efficient 

·         Improve transportation research at universities by removing burdensome restrictions on grant applicants and increasing the focus on multimodal research which universities are uniquely positioned to conduct

·         Direct the Office of Science and Technology Policy to lead a comprehensive cross-agency coordination effort on transportation research

·         Invest in pavement research to reduce costs, increase performance, and increase the use of recycled materials

·         Bolster technology transfer and innovation in transportation by removing restrictions on researcher travel and recognizing outstanding innovators

·         Direct the Department of Transportation (DOT) to identify gaps in current data collection, improve freight data, and provide important ethical safeguards for data collection, storage, and dissemination

·         Instruct DOT to create a strategic research plan to improve efficiency and safety of freight transportation, and focus resources on top priorities

·         Support research to test ground-based, satellite, and unmanned aerial systems’ (UAS) ability to help solve multimodal transportation challenges and improve safety

·         Establish an Intelligent Transportation Systems Center of Excellence to improve sharing of best practices, training, and technical assistance for this challenging interdisciplinary field.

·         Provide considerations to improve future Strategic Research, Development, and Technology plans based on critiques from the National Academies, including communicating the value of the research and identifying potential and ongoing intermodal and interagency collaborations

“We cannot allow the U.S. to fall behind on advanced transportation technologies,” Rep. Lipinski said.  “We must strive to be proactive, not reactive, in regard to transportation innovation.  It is important for industry and government to work together to accelerate implementation and maximize the societal benefits of these technologies.”

“The Intelligent Transportation Society of America’s (ITS America) members would like to thank Congressman Dan Lipinski for introducing the Future TRIP Act, which outlines a roadmap for critical research into the future of connected and automated vehicles, and other intelligent transportation systems that are redefining transportation,” said Regina Hopper, President and CEO of ITS America.  “These technologies will have a transformative impact on our society by dramatically reducing vehicle crashes, improving mobility and access to transportation services for all Americans, decreasing traffic congestion and freight bottlenecks, and creating a more seamless, efficient, and cost-effective transportation network.  The bill also recognizes the importance of protecting the 5.9 GHz band of spectrum that was set aside for Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) communication, and ensures that efforts to free up additional airwaves do not jeopardize the future of this life-saving technology.  The high-tech transportation revolution is already making our lives better, and ITS America’s members are eager to work with Rep. Lipinski and other members of Congress to support smart policy proposals like the Future TRIP Act and provide critical funding for intelligent transportation systems research, including connected and automated vehicles, so we can accelerate the availability of these game changing technologies.”

“Representative Lipinski's Future TRIP Act will move us toward achieving one of T4America's core policy goals: nurturing and propagating the next generation of transportation innovations, and Transportation for America is pleased to support this bill,” said James Corless, Director of Transportation for America.  “Whether through the coming wave of autonomous and connected vehicles, or smarter data collection to help us better measure the impact our dollars have, federal research dollars should be sparking the development of next generation infrastructure and practices.  Every innovative company spends a portion of their budget on research and development, and a forward-looking federal transportation research program is a smart way to help us improve the efficiency of existing networks and reduce costs for pennies on the dollar.”

“Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) applauds the efforts of Rep. Lipinski to establish a foundation for the widespread use of connected and intelligent vehicle technologies,” said Brian Wynne, President and CEO of AUVSI.  “A new generation of intelligent machines, including automated vehicles, will improve the safety of our transportation system, provide mobility to the elderly and disabled, and reduce cost and waste.  Through collaborative research efforts, demonstration programs, and the development of standards and procedures, the Future TRIP Act will help develop a culture of innovation and accelerate the adoption of these transformative technologies.”

“Congressman Lipinski has been a steadfast freight advocate and his continued leadership is appreciated by the Coalition for America’s Gateways and Trade Corridors,” said Elaine Nessle, Executive Director of the Coalition for America's Gateways and Trade Corridors.  “We commend his efforts to develop legislation that encompasses both strategic freight planning and research, and also considers input from a broad spectrum of stakeholders.  A well-functioning freight transportation system, based on sound research, is vital to our national economic prosperity.  We look forward to continued work with the Congressman, knowing that like our Coalition, he understands the importance of addressing emerging and future research needs related to improving our multimodal goods movement system.”

“We would like to thank Congressman Lipinski for introducing the Future TRIP Act,” said Ken McLeod, Legal and Policy Specialist for the League of American Bicyclists.  “As new transportation technologies are being developed, it is incredibly important that we understand how they might affect all road users.  With further research, we might be able to confidently know that these advanced safety and connectivity technologies will not just make driving better, but will make our communities better.  Current research already suggests that bicyclists will benefit greatly from advanced technologies.”

The bill is also endorsed by the National Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA), the American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA), and AAA.

Future TRIP Act (06/26/1512:55 PMET )