It is expected that connected vehicles (CVs) will significantly improve mobility and safety while providing additional information that will enhance the operation of the nation’s roadways to create a better experience for the traveling public. As an enhancement to automated vehicles, CV technologies will also enable direct interaction of automated vehicles with infrastructure and other vehicles to maximize understanding of the environment while minimizing crash risk. In both cases, significant prototyping and testing will be required to understand the challenges and benefits of CV deployment.

To facilitate the understanding of CV deployment, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) has partnered with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) to create the Virginia Connected Corridors (VCC). The VCC is a CV environment that enables the development and assessment of early stage connected and automated vehicle (CAV) applications. The VCC comprises more than 60 roadside units (RSUs) which are connected to a low-latency backhaul network via dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) and cellular technology.

The VCC strives to provide an open application development environment where third party developers may bring their applications and tap into existing infrastructure resources and systems to minimize time to demonstration and deployment. Developers may create applications that run directly on the VCC Cloud computing environment or access VCC data through a Public API depending on which is most appropriate.