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Driverless vehicles, a hyper-loop and high speed train details included in briefings to Congress

5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty says she's been learning more about the future of Transportation in the briefings she gets as a member of the Transportation Committee.  She says the technological transformation is going to be staggering.  Esty says the so-called "uberization" and driverless vehicles could be transformative in how vehicles are moving.  Maybe not over the next 5 years, but over 30 years Esty says this will be highly disruptive. 


Esty wants to focus on what that means for smart investments now that will still make sense decades from now.  She questioned whether it makes sense to do massive infrastructure investment if the road beds will have to include sensors that allow for the safe movement of driverless vehicles.


She also gave the example of if trucks are driven remotely, that could be detrimental to the three million truck drivers currently employed.  But she says it could lead to the roads being used more effectively.  Esty says there are a lot of pluses and minuses in this new world.


Getting into the world of science fiction, Esty says some ideas may not be that far off.  She talked about something called a hyper-loop.  She's been meeting with people from California about the concept similar to the pneumatic tubes that used to be used in banks.  Instead of putting papers in a tube, it would be people in these pods.  Esty called it mind blowing, but there are people now working on this. 


Wilton state Representative Gail Lavielle, who attended the discussion, joked that it's like The Jetsons.  Esty said she wouldn't want to be the first one to volunteer to go into the pod and go at the speed of sound, but that the concept is amazing.

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