ShareThis Page
Peduto to lay out ‘road map’ for cities to benefit from self-driving tech |

Peduto to lay out ‘road map’ for cities to benefit from self-driving tech

Aaron Aupperlee
| Thursday, May 25, 2017 6:15 p.m
In this Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2016, file photo, a self-driving Uber car stops at a red light on Liberty Avenue through the Bloomfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh. (AP Photo)

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto next month plans to detail what he calls a road map to help cities benefit from self-driving technologies being developed by Uber and other companies.

“There are the general rules of engagement,” Peduto said Thursday. “Autonomous vehicles will reshape cities. What should cities be doing to make sure it benefits society?”

He said the announcement will form the basis for the memorandum of understanding that he has said he will ask Uber to sign, imploring the company to treat its employees better and to be help the city contend with traffic and infrastructure challenges.

Uber began testing self-driving cars in Pittsburgh a year ago.

RELATED: One year after they hit the road in Pittsburgh, challenges remain for Uber self-driving cars

Peduto will make the announcement June 14 with the American Architectural Foundation at The National Press Club in Washington.

Peduto said Uber has been invited to participate. An Uber spokesman said the company has not decided if it will attend.

Pittsburgh and the American Architectural Foundation hosted the National Summit on Design and Urban Mobility this month to discuss what is at stake for cities as self-driving car technology progresses.

“We know that there will be this disruption, and we know now that it’s going to be much faster than we thought, so what do we put in place to make sure that it benefits people, that it benefits mobility and accessibility for all, and how do we make it so it enhances cities in the long run,” Peduto said.

The mayor and foundation representatives plan to discuss the summit’s final report, said Matthew Despard, a foundation spokesman.

Peduto has said he is disappointed with the relationship between Uber and the city. He has said the company has not been a good partner to the city and that the company should treat its drivers like employees, giving them a W-2 tax form instead of a 1099 form and offering benefits.

He wants Uber to commit to using low-emission vehicles and has asked the company to contribute to public infrastructure projects.

Peduto has acknowledged he can’t force Uber to sign the memorandum or impose regulations or levy fines against the company if it refuses.

The announcement in June will not be a list of demands for tech companies and auto manufacturers pursuing self-driving cars, he said.

“What it will be is looking for good corporate partners to be able to not only have a corporate plan for profit but also a civic plan for how this change will benefit all cities,” Peduto said.

Aaron Aupperlee is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at, 412-336-8448 or via Twitter @tinynotebook.

Aaron Aupperlee is a Tribune-Review staff reporter. You can contact Aaron at 412-320-7986, or via Twitter .

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.