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How to design the city based robotic transport
Material posted : Administrator Publication date: 31-03-2020

In this essay deals with the potential for big changes in the cities, with the emergence of robotic vehicles. These changes will come, because these cars will be able to drop off passengers and proceed to perform other tasks, as well as yourself tight to Park in remote areas. The need for a large number of Parking spaces around the commercial buildings should be reduced greatly, especially in suburbs and areas far from the city center. If the land that was intended for Parking, can be used for something else, what it could mean for the city?

One of the most fundamental goals of the city is to provide the ability to navigate through it. Some even claim that in addition to the cost of the common infrastructure, the only real purpose of the city – reducing the time and cost to travel to places that you need to work, to friends, to school and for shopping – everyone is happy when these places are not far from you.

Because the machines-the robots so much will change the transport, also they will change and the city. The car itself was the cause of the changes of cities in the 20th century, led to the development of suburbs and launched other trends.

It is difficult to accurately predict what will be the changes made by the machines-robots. People can accept longer commutes and large tubes. They can be satisfied with a school that is far away from their homes or that of their friends, they and their children may be scattered throughout the city. People can also strive for short and predictable travel in different directions. Maybe less people will go and use a robotic transport for trips to interesting places.

Given the volume of potential change, I turned to urban geographers with a call to initiate research in this area. I have a short summary article on the issues of urban planning, which lists the potential consequences of the emergence of robotic machines, in order to understand what we can come.

Despite the fact that still a high degree of uncertainty, we can assume what will all these consequences. Some of them are evaluated negatively will increase the distance and passage of vehicles, people will start to live like enclaves, and people become less walk.

But there is an alternative that will eliminate the problems with the walks. It is that the robotic car can deliver you to your destination, after which it will go to Park or leave yourself for long-term storage (or will do other work) until he (or another car) will come and get you.

In our time large parts of the cities are Parking areas (as well as the curb of the streets). We demand free Parking everywhere, where there is no shortage of Parking spaces, and free Parking encourages the possession of private cars.

This is particularly obvious in the suburbs. In the shopping streets of the suburbs is a huge amount of Parking, which is often required by building codes. The Parking spaces are placed loosely, for what they are, or are not designed that they will move on foot or to walk on them unpleasant.

Shopping malls inside is nice (assuming purity) all weather area for walking and shopping, but outside they are surrounded by car parks – Hiking in a Mall or between them is a rarity. These Parking lots designed for peak demand, which typically falls during the holidays. In other days these Parking lots are mostly idle.

More dense urban shopping street are a stores placed closer to each other, without Parking in principle (and if it is, then it will have to pay). Such streets difficult to drive (which puts them at a disadvantage compared to shopping malls and pedestrian streets), but once you are hit, you will see that to walk and to walk between the shops is the norm. Such streets are usually built-in densely built-up areas, and the people who live in them, can go to shopping areas on foot. In some cases, it's a pretty long walk, so the house located near the shopping block more expensive, but a small walk and bustle is a compromise.

Design, in which urban clusters are associated with a stop on the main transit line called transit-oriented (TOP). His progress and work in this area become relevant topic among urban planners. Even without transit, some areas with low density arose the desire to create more dense areas, which will combine retail and residential space (houses above the shops that were familiar, or apartment buildings) to restore active urban environment. Such areas tend to be upscale and supervised, preventing the emergence of other elements of dense development, which is accused of that they filled the suburbs.

Many people, especially families with children, also still appreciate the low density suburbs. They require large Parking areas and homes, between homes must be a space, but they also insist on safe conditions and low traffic so that their children could play and socialize. Often they do not allow their children to leave the area until they're older. This, in turn, has led to the fact that residential complexes in the style of the strip malls surrounded by Parking lots, have become prevalent in areas of low building density.

Consider the concept of design-oriented robomachine (conventionally, we call it ROP) and draw Parallels with the TOP. In particular, consider shopping street, which is the minimum number of Parking spaces. The shops and restaurants of the such placed more densely as on the regular city streets or in outdoor version of a suburban shopping center. The shops in these streets are not removed from the sidewalk, entrances are located next to it. Potentially, this street will be narrower, although it will be a place for stops machines-robots that can implement ingress and egress without blocking traffic.

Alternatively, for stores can be the lanes, which will be stop. Indeed, there are a number of small areas in small towns, which were designed to avoid heavy traffic in search of Parking on main street. Parking in such zones are placed outside the shops, or built multi-level Parking structures. Example – the suburban business district of mountain view.

When the world will switch to robotic cars, many will use robotaxi. They reduce traffic and require minimum Parking spaces. Some people will arrive on their personal machines-robots, and they will want their car waiting for them nearby. Such cars can stay parked a short distance from the main street, they will be placed as if they are stripped Valet, while using only 40% of the area of conventional Parking. If the density is low, such land will be readily available. If the land is expensive, Parking structures will have more meaning, or machines will be able to travel further to places with cheaper land – then people will need to send a preliminary notice for a few minutes before departure.

It should be noted that robotic Parking allows the city's commercial Parking areas to distribute the entire Parking capacity. Today, as the people will leave from the Parking place far away, each store must be a sufficient number of Parking places next to him. Shopping centers are more effective because they share their Parking. However, suburban streets tend to give each store enough space for Parking, and therefore it is expected that the client will not Park in another neighborhood.

Robomachine can also encourage walking, assuming only one-way. You can get to one end of a city street, and then walk another, simultaneously making a purchase and your business. When you reach the end, you will not need again to come all the way on foot, you can just go forward, and the car will pick you up at the end of your walk.
You can also see my car in some points of your walk to leave her packages.

Town center, built on the principles of ROP, can satisfy anyone, but it will be especially popular among people who live near them. As before, some will live close enough to walk there on foot, but a much larger group of people will be able to navigate these streets, taking advantage of the quick service machines-robots on demand. If you live a mile away (which is common in cities with low population density) on the trip you'll need 2-3 minutes – people in expensive houses, which the realtors promise "walking distance to the shopping quarter" it will take more time to walk this route. If the service cars on demand will work fast enough, the distance of a mile will be as accessible if it were 5 times less. This is good for homes and retail.

You should also consider the advantages for seniors and individuals with disabilities, as they are a big part of society. These people not only can not travel long distance on foot to reach the city streets, they are also hard to walk on them. With ROP it will be easier to access to such streets, if need be, cars on demand will carry them for short distances, even if it's just one quarter.

It is also important to note that a huge reduction in the required Parking spaces (which will come through the dissemination of robotic vehicles and taxis) will liberate the earth in all cities, except for the densely built up. Robotaxi and cars for General use not so often are parked, which will lead to a sharp decrease in the number of vehicles per person in the city, and private cars can still be parked in existing Parking lots as if it takes the Valet, or Park in pairs on the roadside. Old Parking lots can be green areas or be built in accordance with the desired plan of the city.

The density of residential development may increase, as some homes located away from driveways and garages. While car owners like to protect their vehicles and appreciate the direct access they get when the vehicle is in the same place, it's hard to ignore the huge cost of garages and driveways from the point of view occupied lands. In many suburban developments, houses have garages, occupying most of their street façade, bringing the building pushed back further from the street. Front yards are rarely used, and the main rooms are connected with the rear yard. If approached from the point of view of cost, it can be countered. Actually, owners can be happy to have more land for other purposes. Densely deployed in a densely built-up areas allows for more people to live within a short walk of a city street – but it's not as valuable if there is a service with robot cars that can take you there quickly deliver. Of course, those who do not want such visits, insist on low-density. If the land is expensive, and city plans permit, the dense buildings houses without garages will be circulated.

ROP in rural areas

Robotic cars can also be a means of promoting a lifestyle with a low density of development in areas with cheap land (or secured by the owners). Many people like the rural lifestyle, when they don't see the neighbors, and for any action you need to go somewhere. Machines-robots all this will make it easier. First, a long trip will be easier (maybe it will be time to sleep), the quality of short trips will also grow. Children also can ride to school with the help of a robotic transport, although one probably needs to be shorter than in adults (who are willing to put up with the way to work). Maybe kids will ride together in the car for 4-6 persons (something like a school bus) because they do not choose the means of transport and can enjoy the company of, while adults do not like to ride with strangers, as well as the situation when the route is not on the road.

The concept of a bot to deliver also offers the option to order anything via the Internet and quickly receive their purchases even if they are perishable. It will cost more delivery in the city, since the distance can be several miles, but small robots for shipping can be easy and effective.

Small rural towns will continue to exist. They are rarely problems with Parking (if there's no tourists) and the need for Parking spaces will decrease.

The robotic taxi services exist in rural areas, but probably won't offer a fast car coming towards the place. Possession of the machines-robots will be more common, and the land to store enough. Service robotaxi will work perfectly for trips scheduled and will be good as an alternative to a second car or car for teen.

Will we see the ROP?

In a few decades, when most cars will be robotic, it will be unlikely that the new area of business will want to devote most of their land to Parking lots, they make you feel like their cities to enforce it will not. Moreover, in the first decade of drive robotic machines, owners will find that their Parking will be in less demand. If the price of land increase, there is a need to develop (fill) these spaces and make them a commercial area, but it is possible to fill these areas up to the sidewalk (in the case of increasing traffic on the sidewalk). Will remain some Parking for cars controlled by humans and robotic Parking of cars awaiting their owners. The situation in which your car is a robot waiting at the store more attractive – you don't need to call in advance, just leave the shop and he'll be right over. But with the growth of popularity of robotaxi Parking spaces will be freed up and used differently.

In the case of the retail trips, probably as a payment method will be used by the mobile device. This will give the car to understand that the owner will need it without any action on the part of the owner, and this will allow cars to leave the store for a minute, while appearing at the door in time.

The new development will take into account the methodology of the RRR, or will be established requirements to development. In addition, zones designed at the TOP, can be converted by using a mixture of ideas from the TOP ROP, although the zone of embarkation/disembarkation can be placed so conveniently. If transfer to a transit station will be a faster road trips because of congestion, we can see many people wanting to drive robomachine to the transit station, but those vehicles will not need to wait for passengers, since such trips would be longer.

What will happen to the business districts?

Business districts – the core and heart of many cities. Central transit nodes are located in the business districts, and to get there by transit is the easiest, and sometimes it is the only place easy to get to. The districts are home to skyscrapers and expensive Parking infrastructure, and not a huge area for Parking. Depending on the city or in those areas no one lives, and outside of working hours they are a Ghost town that lives only in working hours, or they have a lot of houses and life there seething. In the late 20th century the city had switched between these modes.

Before the arrival of the era of online shopping business districts (or parts of them with lower rents) was a key location for specialized shops that could not exist outside of the big city. In these areas represented rich corporations (like banks), and although Parking in them is expensive, and the traffic turns into a nightmare for employees provides many services, but if the visits to companies located in the Central business districts are part of your working day, you can walk between them on foot. In the Central business districts are also a lot of places that are not offices, including cinemas, theatres and stadiums. Meeting rooms, visitor centers and luxury hotels are also often located in these areas. As well as local government. Robotic cars will make us think about the reasons for the placement of objects in the business districts. There are factors that push companies to locate in these areas – high rents, expensive Parking, heavy traffic and crime and the homeless in some cities. People are attracted by other factors: atmosphere, convenience, Hiking, high-road capacity during peak hours, the interaction with other areas of the business and easy access by public transport.

Robotic cars can solve problems with Parking and in some measure to deal with problems with traffic (for example, you can work while standing in traffic). They will reduce the importance of convenient public transportation because travel will be available as much space as is available for travel on robotaxi. Destinations like stadiums, Convention centers and cinemas will enter into a synergy with other objects in the Central business districts and will not receive this special benefit. If you are going to a movie, you may just prefer comfortable movie theater, which is located near you and your friends. In the end, the car-robots can eliminate a lot of congestion, which will make business districts more attractive.

To give predictions about the business of hotels and Convention centers more difficult. Many people want to stay in the center. This is especially important for tourists, as tourist destinations, are likely to remain in Central areas, especially in old cities. However, it is possible that tourists may prefer a room at the price of $ 100 per night and a 10-minute drive to your destination instead of a room for $ 300 in the city centre. Many cities (especially new ones) have now become polycentric and contain numerous small business districts. Robotic cars make it easy to move between areas, encouraging a model cities. In polycentricity has its advantages, as the model of the big city, all services which are concentrated at its center, is ineffective.

Bots for deliveries

The city's retail trade may change with the advent of bots to deliver. Such robots can deliver any goods (and different types of food) at prices wholesale warehouses in less than 30 minutes. Local retailers can not compete with this business on most categories of goods that have been sold in hypermarkets, will go even further. As a result, local retailers will be to sell something that people prefer to buy in person. Their business will be specialized stores with goods that people will want to see and try out before buying. Restaurants focused on the atmosphere and fellowship will continue to thrive, and places tied to Hiking.

Local sellers can also use bots to deliver, offering delivery in 3 minutes instead of half an hour. However, this will only make sense in the case of premium goods, dishes, cooked to order, fresh products, small tools, parts, and similar products.

For businesses in this area need products and services that are not "destinations" for the people as part of trips or excursions. A dentist or a lawyer to be here and can not be (except that they will like this location), and SPA might. I expect that retailers will adapt and come up with a new business model in quick deliveries and light travel, which we haven't seen yet.

Also I expect bots to deliver will change the restaurant business. They will help the "home" restaurants, where skilled chefs prepare food from the ingredients brought bots shipper's right on time, for people who are a few miles from the kitchen. Ordering food can be planned in advance, so the food will be delivered hot. Dinner can be prepared in 4 different chefs, each preparing a large number of evening meals – the high-performance system without loss of time the chef and food, as well as low cost electricity for the operation of robots.

While homemade food will become cheap and quality restaurants that fit are likely to focus on service and atmosphere. Maybe they want to live on the streets where full of life. In many parts of the world dinner when the weather is nice and outdoors and not indoors.

The Board of shopping centres

It is difficult to predict the future of today's large shopping malls. With the help of machines-the robots travel in shopping centers will become easier (because these machines become easier visits to all places). They will drop you off right outside (or even inside) the shopping center, although not right at the door of the store, as in the case of a street, designed by EPR. The shopping centers will compete with warehouses that will offer service in 30 minutes. Street, built on the principles of ROP, may be a popular destination at a distance of one to two miles, while a shopping centre can be in the distance, and the trip will take more time, but since you're not driving, then this time can be spent usefully.

Shopping centers are always a comfortable climate, which is important for cold, hot or rainy places. Theoretically, ROP-streets can go under roofs and canopies, but then it will be hard to distinguish from shopping centre. Shopping centers made in the same style are protection, which will not allow the homeless and other undesirable persons. the ROP-the streets will be more organic, and will live according to the city rules.

Probably, we'll see how innovators are developing a completely different commercial and social space in the world of robotic vehicles.

Everything is done for children

I believe that the main driving force of urbanism and suburban tourism are children. When people become parents, they are very much shift the priorities to meet the needs of their children.
They feel a strong need for space, safety and better schools for their children. Lately, parents are still more worried about the safety of themselves drive their children to school (even if far). Parents discouraged their children from self-walking in urban areas, despite the fact that the crime rate is down.

Although robotic vehicles suitable for transportation of small children, will be widely accepted later than unmanned vehicles for Teens and adults, their appearance will significantly change the situation. It will be possible situation in which a child (under a certain age) to attend school many miles from home, the child will be easy to move, and parents will receive a minimum of inconvenience. Depending on that, how to pay for school (and what school you can send your children at the expense of public funds), all this can easily lead to the selection of schools in the market and to abandon the concept of district schools.

Children can also have friends from all over the world – thanks to the Internet, which they already use. They will have every opportunity to communicate, is that they fail to meet spontaneously, as when meeting in a Park or on the way home from school. Some families walk home from school will be perceived positively (rural children live for a long time).

Parents like big houses and yards for their children. and they like to be in "enclaves" with low level crime, in which a few people with low incomes and the homeless. Adults without children, in turn, prefer a more interesting and recreational areas.

Also robotic cars will simplify the organization of the work of nannies, you will be able to send their children where they will be under the supervision. It will also become possible distribution of caring responsibilities between members of extended family or friends, parents trust. All this presupposes the availability of the vehicle, who is authorized to transport a young child with video surveillance. The child should not be able to exit the vehicle (except an emergency). It will take time to technology has earned that level of trust.

As people change their capacity to meet the anticipated needs of their children, and changing areas to the cities.

Brad Templeton


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