i3 - May/June 2018 - 37

By Representative Sam Graves (R-MO)

Policy

G U E ST B LO G

Sam Graves (R-MO), senior member of the House Committee on
Transportation and Infrastructure

Sam Graves
Driving Toward Our Future
Infrastructure Network

 I  

Just Super/Getty Images

nfrastructure drives every aspect of our economy, and technological advancements in this space have the potential to
move things more safely and efficiently. While technology
is rapidly developing, our infrastructure is stuck in first gear and
it is my vision to create a better way forward.
As a senior member of the
Transportation Committee, I have
spent the last several years traveling
the country and learning about emerging transportation technology. I am
encouraged by all the advancements
the private sector has made that will
improve people's experience with our
transportation network. Whether that
is less time spent in traffic, greater
options for rural and elderly citizens,
or fewer traffic accidents, much of
the work they have done will make
moving people and goods both safer
and more efficient. One of the most
exciting technologies on this front is
self-driving vehicles.
To the casual observer, self-driving
vehicles are still a dream, but the reality
is a lot of this technology is already in
use today. Lane departure warning systems, automatic braking, and adaptive
cruise control have increasingly become
standard in both personal and commercial vehicles, helping protect drivers
and reduce accidents. However, there
are limits to how much we can achieve
in this area if we are simply deploying
individual vehicles with reactive,
unconnected technology. We must look
beyond individual cars and imagine a
system where personal and commercial
vehicles can connect to each other and
to our infrastructure.
It is vital that the government maintains the infrastructure it is responsible
for. In the short term, simple upgrades
C TA . t e c h / i 3

to how we mark lanes and standardize
signs will go a long way in improving
the performance of self-driving technology. However, we need a long-term
and sustainable funding mechanism to
meet today's infrastructure needs while
helping us plan for the future. An infrastructure package is an ideal opportunity to address this problem. Doing so
would provide the long-term certainty
and funding needed for policymakers,
private companies and local partners to
make technology a more integral part
of our transportation system.
It's important that Congress takes a
full spectrum approach to encouraging
innovation. The majority of tech

companies are small businesses and they
face the same challenges as other small
businesses. They need access to a skilled
workforce, relief from overzealous regulators, and above all want certainty so
they can focus on doing what they do
best. We want to set the table and a
framework for technology to flourish.
This is why a soft touch approach from
regulators will help realize the full
potential of American innovation especially in the transportation sector.
There is a bipartisan desire to invest
and modernize the way we move people, goods and ideas. And Congress has
begun the process of writing an infrastructure bill that will achieve that goal
by streamlining the federal permitting
process, providing new tools for funding projects and making real investments in our infrastructure. While
there is still much work to be done,
now is the time to accelerate toward a
21st century infrastructure network.

I am encouraged by all the
advancements the private sector
has made that will improve
people's experience with our
transportation network.

MAY/JUNE 2018

37


http://cta.tech/i3

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - May/June 2018

Contents
i3 - May/June 2018 - Cover1
i3 - May/June 2018 - Cover2
i3 - May/June 2018 - Contents
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