Jitney Jeremiad: Misdirected Transportation Planning Emphases - Or Technology Luddite's Lament?

6 Pages Posted: 7 May 2019 Last revised: 26 Jun 2019

See all articles by Michael N. Widener

Michael N. Widener

Bonnett, Fairbourn, Friedman & Balint; Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Date Written: February 25, 2019


This paper addresses the public's and the private sector's distraction from the hard work of infrastructure planning and implementation coordination, as they hope instead that IoT + AI + 5G = guaranteed achievements in mobility in dense urban areas. Not so fast, citizens. This paper identifies four fundamentally false suppositions about the state of play in transportation infrastructure planning meriting healthy skepticism if not outright rejection by the public and elected officials alike. Alternatively, stakeholders can let 'er rip and watch the Facebook "re-run" applied to mobility pathways of congested urban areas – when technologies' gurus ask regulators to help them solve runaway problems caused by their conjoined good intentions and tunnel-visions. There's time to prepare municipal infrastructure and accompanying land use regulation for the advent of even the most modestly-scaled numbers of autonomous vehicles - so why not do just that?

Note: This paper was prepared in connection with the Smart Cities Conference at the Sandra Day O'Connor Law School on February 22, 2019 sponsored by the ABA Section on Science and Technology Law, where the author participated in the conference's panel on Smart Transportation.

Keywords: artificial intelligence, 5G technology, internet of things, IoT, transportation planning, transportation coordination, land use planning, infrastructure planning, intelligent transportation systems, autonomous vehicles, self-driving vehicles, driverless vehicles

JEL Classification: R14, R41, R42, R48, R52, R53, R58

Suggested Citation

Widener, Michael N., Jitney Jeremiad: Misdirected Transportation Planning Emphases - Or Technology Luddite's Lament? (February 25, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3341555 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3341555

Michael N. Widener (Contact Author)

Bonnett, Fairbourn, Friedman & Balint ( email )

2325 East Camelback Road
Suite 300
Phoenix, AZ 85016
United States

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University ( email )

Prescott, AZ 86301
United States

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