FCC Approves Connected Transportation Technology Along 33 Smart Mobility Corridor in The Beta District
By The Beta District
Dublin, OH; Marysville, OH; Union County, OH –The 33 Smart Mobility Corridor’s connected vehicle environment is taking another step forward with approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC approved licenses for short range, wireless vehicle to infrastructure (V2I) technology installed along the corridor, which can now be used for connected and automated vehicle testing and research.
The licenses allow 33 Smart Mobility projects, including Connected Dublin, Connected Marysville and DriveOhio initiatives, to transmit safety messages to and from outfitted vehicles traveling in The Beta District, the newly named area that stretches from Columbus through Dublin and Marysville to Honda and the Transportation Research Center Inc. in East Liberty.
The Northwest 33 Council of Governments (NW 33 COG) oversees the District and the 33 Smart Mobility Corridor project. The COG received a $5.9 million US Department of Transportation grant to test connected vehicles and roadside infrastructure and share lessons learned with policymakers and the global transportation industry.
“These licenses are a critical item on our checklist as we prepare to launch several smart mobility initiatives in The Beta District,” said Megan O’Callaghan, Dublin’s deputy city manager and a COG board member. The State of Ohio and COG partners have extended fiber-optic broadband, installed 100+ roadside units with radio transmitters and upgraded the electric capacity to support vehicle testing. Our last step is to equip at least 200 fleet vehicles with safety features to warn drivers of upcoming red lights or when a pedestrian is crossing the road ahead, for example.” O’Callaghan said that would be completed this fall.
Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) and its smart mobility arm, DriveOhio, installed a $15 million, 432-strand fiber-optic broadband network in the test corridor. This enables connected vehicles to communicate with roadside infrastructure and alert traffic managers of changing road conditions. Drivers in equipped vehicles will receive red light warnings and other alerts. Traffic managers and drivers can then take immediate actions to prevent crashes.
“At DriveOhio and ODOT, safety is our first priority,” said Howard Wood, DriveOhio’s executive director. “Ohio’s smart mobility investments and research findings will move Ohio and our peers closer toward our ultimate goal of zero deaths on our roadways. In Ohio, we are developing the transportation system of the 21st century.”
“The FCC licenses allow us to use the most well-developed connected vehicle technology available so far,” said Tim Hansley, Union County administrator and COG board chair. “Until 5G programs are fully operational, short range, wireless V2I technology is a must-have technology to allow for connected vehicle testing. We are grateful to the FCC for granting us the ability to use it.”
About The Beta District
The Beta District is the newly named high-tech region that stretches northwest along US 33 from Columbus, Ohio, the nation’s 14th largest city, through Franklin, Union and Logan counties. It is overseen by the Northwest 33 Council of Governments, which includes Dublin, Marysville, Union County and the Marysville-Union County Port Authority. The Beta District offers an ecosystem of smart infrastructure and living labs where leaders in all industry sectors can tap into resources and collaborate on groundbreaking projects. More than $100 million in public and private dollars have been invested in The Beta District’s first living lab, the 33 Smart Mobility Corridor, including significant funding from the Ohio Department of Transportation and DriveOhio. DriveOhio is the state’s portal to smart mobility on the ground and in the air. Another Beta District partner, The Transportation Research Center Inc., is home to the 540-acre SMARTCenter, North America’s most comprehensive closed track testing for connected and automated vehicles.