These vehicles will however eventually be driven on the public highway – the responsibility
for which rests with the relevant highway authority. An increasingly common question from
highways authorities is “how do we prepare for autonomous vehicles?” Currently highways
authorities provide hard infrastructure in the form of roads and signalling (including:
painted lines and signage), which are interpreted by human drivers to inform their decision
making; however with the introduction of autonomous vehicles very little is understood as
to the infrastructure provisions and signage required for their decision-making capabilities.
This study seeks to understand what infrastructure might be required by examining recent
Level 3, 4 and 5 autonomous vehicle trials, and further sources, to understand what
infrastructure might be required. In doing so, it will aim to address the following questions:
- Can these systems operate using existing infrastructure meaning no changes are required?
- What condition does this infrastructure need to be in? i.e. does the existing infrastructure require upgrading to ensure a high quality system?
- Will new road infrastructure need to be added?