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The Surface Street facilitates advanced/automated testing in configurable environments such as suburban neighborhoods and city intersections. This facility provides users an unprecedented opportunity to study challenging transportation questions such as pedestrian risk in urban environments. Data collected from testing on the Surface Street will maximize the safety and performance benefits of advanced-vehicle technologies.

Located adjacent to the Surface Street is the Automation Hub, which serves as home base for the InternHUB, an interdisciplinary advanced learning program focused on accelerating practical skill development for students. Interns collaborating with Virginia Tech faculty and industry partners have direct access to the Smart Roads through the Automation Hub, which was designed to facilitate short-turnaround projects focused on advanced-vehicle testing conducted in collaboration with Virginia Tech, VDOT, and industry leaders.

Some key features include:

  • Portable, reconfigurable buildings and other infrastructure elements
  • Multiple actor (e.g., multiple vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists) scenarios
  • Reconfigurable roundabout
  • Multiple merge areas
  • Reconfigurable automation-compatible pavement markings
  • Multilane layouts
  • Signalized intersections with various geometries and numbers of lanes
  • Multiple parking and passenger pick-up/drop-off areas
  • An optical fiber network spanning the Surface Street section
  • Connectivity to backend computational networks via cellular and DSRC modes