News & Insights

Innovative Technology Will Revolutionize Transit in San Jose

Kimley-Horn's Adam Dankberg Evaluates Feasibility of Connecting Silicon Valley

Source: 2getthere and Jan Kok

Home to a booming downtown area and one of the nation’s fastest growing airports, San Jose, CA is in need of innovative solutions to provide connections between Silicon Valley’s retail, office, cultural, and residential destinations. Focused on this goal, the City of San Jose contacted Kimley-Horn to gain a better understanding of new transit technology and how it can enhance public transportation in the area. With the help of our Adam Dankberg, the City evaluated the feasibility of nearly two dozen novel solutions.

In a recent interview with The Mercury News, Adam said he’s excited that the program, “isn’t just doing the same transit for a little cheaper, but really fundamentally changing what transit is, how people interact with it, and using technology to make a better transportation experience.” In addition to a better experience, these solutions will help the City meet its climate change goals. Currently, transportation accounts for more than 60% of the City’s carbon emissions, well above the 40% average in California.

Evaluating Potential Transit Solutions

Autonomous mini-bus solution designed by 2getthere

Five of the proposed solutions stood out to Adam as particularly noteworthy and significantly less expensive than legacy projects currently in process:

  • 2getthere: Holding as many as 22 people, these autonomous mini-buses operate in a dedicated transit lane or on an elevated guideway.
  • BYD: Holding as many as 75 passengers, these driverless, battery-powered shuttles run on an elevated guideway.
  • Modutram: Holding as many as eight passengers, these driverless, battery-powered mini-trains operate on elevated guideways.
  • Plenary Glydways: Holding as many as five people, these small “podcars” operate on an elevated guideway and take passengers to their destinations without any stops.
  • The Boring Company (Elon Musk’s tunneling firm): Holding as many as seven people in one vehicle, Tesla’s autonomous Model X vehicles travel through underground tunnels to bring passengers to their destinations.

While many of these technologies are several years away from implementation, we’re excited to help the City of San Jose and Silicon Valley with their long-term planning to mitigate congestion, address climate change, and connect people and places through innovative transportation options.

To learn more about our transit consulting services, contact Adam Dankberg.

About the Expert

Adam Dankberg, P.E.

Adam Dankberg, P.E.

Adam has more than 15 years of successful experience with strategic planning, transit facility planning and design, transit operations, first/last-mile planning, multimodal transportation planning, short- and long-term transit planning, and traffic operations experience. He has worked on a wide variety of projects throughout the Bay Area and nationally, including major transit investments, state/federal environmental documents, and organizational planning for agencies, including AC Transit.

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