Autonomous Cars are Coming! How Garcetti’s Prepping L.A.

The mayor announced a new coalition during the L.A. Auto Show’s press days

The mayor’s office used the L.A. Auto Show’s Connected Car Expo—part of the media event that precedes the public show—to announced a “new coalition of transportation technology” that will prepare the city for self-driving cars.

There’s little in the way of details about the working group, which will include the City of Los Angeles, Metro, and Caltrans. The good news though, is that Garcetti and his staff are starting to wrap their heads around the huge changes that autonomous cars will have for L.A. The city takes an optimistic view of the changes, seeing them as an opportunity to cut down on traffic (with less accidents), increase productivity, and help achieve the mayor’s goal of zero traffic fatalities by 2035.

“Connected and self-driving cars promise to not only transform how we commute—but also how we think about the safety and convenience of all automotive travel,” the mayor said in a statement. “This coalition will ensure that the demands and challenges of this new technology are fully considered as we invest in our infrastructure and plan for L.A.’s transportation future.”

With the Auto Show’s press days officially beginning on Tuesday, the other big news was that the 2017 Ford Escape made a flashy debut on Hollywood Boulevard, according to the Detroit Free-Press. The compact crossover was introduced in front of Jimmy Kimmel’s studio, and included Kimmel’s sidekick, Guillermo, jumping out of a piñata (culturally sensitive, not so much).