Driverless car service comes to Frisco July

Brooke Colombo, Editor-in-chief

The possibility of self-driving cars in Frisco might soon become a reality with the California-based company announcing their plans to bring an on-demand autonomous car service to the area in July.

In coordination with the Frisco Transportation Management Association, an initial run of the service will occur for six months, servicing 10,000 people in the fixed area  around Hall Park, The Star, and Frisco Station.

“’s autonomous vehicles will help people get around one of our most vibrant, commercial areas along Frisco’s ‘North Platinum Corridor,’” Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney said in a press release. “We applaud the collaboration of the Denton County Transportation Authority, as well as our private partners at HALL Park, Frisco Station and The Star, which gave the green light, so to speak, to this pioneering pilot program.”

While the onset of self-driving cars may be limited, this trial could be the stepping stone to major changes for Frisco streets.

“Frisco is recognized as a leader in using ‘smart,’ innovative traffic technologies,” Cheney said in a press release. “Today definitely marks a mobility milestone for our entire region. It also gets us closer to achieving one of our council’s ‘Top Ten’ goals, which is to improve traffic throughout Frisco, one of the fastest growing cities in the country.”

The cars could do more than just alleviate traffic though, considering it offers residents with a disability that prevents them from driving the convenience of safe transportation. Senior Luke Newcombe has Microphthalmia, a condition that affects vision, resulting in him not being able to drive.

“Having like a self-driving car service is a precursor to being able to own a self-driving car of my own, so currently the step before having self-driving ride service would be like an Uber,” Newcombe said. “If Uber is step one, and self driving car service is step two, step three would be the day everybody could have their own and everything so that’s like actual independence, but this is a good step towards.”

In order to educate the community and bring awareness to the cars, they will be painted in a distinguishable orange color and feature external screens explaining the vehicles’ actions. Additionally, signs will also be placed along the fixed routes.

“Our technology is safe, smart, and adaptive, and we are ready to work with governments and businesses to solve their transportation needs,” co-founder and CEO of Sameep Tandon said in a press release. “Working with the City of Frisco and Frisco TMA, this pilot program will take people to the places they want to go and transform the way they experience transportation.”