Tuesday, 14 December 2021 11:50

Ford to Bring 10,000 Lbs. of Fresh Food to Detroit Residents with AV Delivery Pilot


...integral for retaining their independence, and the automated vehicle delivery program will help expand our members’ access to groceries, easing one barrier to independent living.


"Our hope is that with one less thing to worry about, our members can focus on family, coordinating doctor visits, handling day-to-day responsibilities, and spending time on things that they enjoy---like volunteering!”


The pilot will use a low-speed autonomous shuttle operated by the Ford future tech autonomous vehicle team and Quantum Signal AI, a wholly owned Ford subsidiary. It will run along a fixed route between the Southwest Detroit Ford Resource and Engagement Center, where bags will be loaded, and Rio Vista, where groceries will be unloaded and distributed to participating residents.


A safety driver will be inside the shuttle at all times, and be monitored by a remote operations team that can also intervene if needed. The pilot vehicle has been upfitted by Ford’s experience design team for efficient packing and transit of fresh food items and for easy loading and unloading.


An exterior design on the shuttle representing the Southwest Detroit neighborhood, created by Detroit School of Arts 12th-grader Brooke Snow, displays an inclusive message of community. Snow plans to use the $5,000 she was awarded for her design to pay for college expenses.


“Creating mobility experiences centered around people and being inclusive is at the forefront of our thinking as we design future services,” said Robert Moser, global head of experience design, Ford Motor Company. “By collaborating with the community and showcasing this artwork throughout the duration of the pilot, it conveys how we are thinking about building services that make people’s lives better for all---not just one specific group.”


Ford is researching a variety of mobility solutions in and around Michigan Central, an innovation district located in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood. Through this grocery delivery pilot, the company aims to learn the best methods for future autonomous goods delivery---from both a technical and experiential standpoint, including how to meet the needs of people living in underserved communities.


Ford Fund manages the Southwest Detroit Ford Resource and Engagement Center, which opened its doors in 2013. The community space functions as a gathering spot for residents to develop new talents and learn new skills, while providing access to essential services.


For more information on the Ford Resource and Engagement Center on the Go program and ZIP code eligibility, call 313-806-0370.


Source: Ford Motor Company 


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