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Peters, Stabenow, Dingell Welcome $3 Million Federal Grant for the University of Michigan’s Center for Connected and Automated Transportation

Funding is Provided by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law the Lawmakers Helped Enact

DETROIT, MI – U.S. Senators Gary Peters (MI) and Debbie Stabenow (MI) and U.S. Representative Debbie Dingell (MI-12) today welcomed $3 million in federal funding for the University of Michigan Center for Connected and Automated Transportation (CCAT) to help advance research in connected infrastructure and autonomous vehicles. The funding is awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation University Transportation Center program and made possible through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law the lawmakers helped enact in 2021.

“Connected and automated vehicle technology is the future of the auto industry, and Michigan is home to the automakers, suppliers and research institutions that will ensure our state is at the forefront of mobility and innovation. I’m proud to have helped secure this funding that will further support the University of Michigan’s groundbreaking research to advance safety and mobility and ensure that Michigan continues to lead the way in developing the vehicles of the future,” said Senator Peters, Chair of the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Surface Transportation, Maritime, Freight and Ports, who supported the University’s grant application.

“The University of Michigan’s critical research has helped make cars and buses safer, improve roads and bridges, and keep us at the forefront of autonomous vehicle breakthroughs. This investment will help the University and our state continue as global leaders in transportation safety, automobiles, and road infrastructure,” said Senator Stabenow.

“The future of transportation is here, and the University of Michigan is leading the way in researching and developing new technologies that are shaping a safer and smarter future of mobility,” said Representative Dingell, co-chair of the House Autonomous Vehicles Caucus. “This strong grant funding will ensure U-M has the tools to address critical transportation challenges by supporting connected and autonomous technology research and education while preparing the next generation of leaders in transportation. It’s critical that our nation is engaging all stakeholders, making bold investments, and implementing the necessary policies to support the safe deployment of autonomous vehicles.” 

"The renewal of CCAT is critical to our mission to bring safe, equitable, and efficient transportation solutions to individuals and communities around the world. Over the next five years, CCAT will continue this vital research with our new partners from Northwestern University, the University of Minnesota, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison as well as create more opportunities for underrepresented students through the creation of the INSPiRE (Internship Student Program in Research Engineering) program," said Dr. James Sayer, Director, University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI).

"Over the past six years, CCAT has funded cutting-edge research as the Federal Region 5 University Transportation Center with a focus on connected and automated vehicles and infrastructure. This work has had a profound impact on the U.S. transportation system from reducing traffic congestion to improving the safety of autonomous vehicles. Our partners have engaged with over 400 undergraduate and graduate students and oversaw the creation of a number of new courses, and have collaborated heavily with industry to establish southeast Michigan and the Midwest as the epicenter for connected and automated transportation and mobility," said Dr. Henry Liu, Director, Center for Connected and Automated Transportation (CCAT) and Mcity.

This grant will help provide the center with resources to further conduct research to advance safety through connected and automated vehicles testing and vehicle-to-everything deployment, enhance mobility by developing connected infrastructure and cooperative driving automation, harden the Connected Autonomous Vehicles ecosystem to reduce cybersecurity risks, and build social infrastructure to ensure transportation equity.

The Center for Connected and Automated Transportation is led by the University of Michigan. Its partner members include: Washtenaw Community College, Central State University, Northwestern University, Purdue University, the University of Akron, the University of Illinois – Urbana Champaign, the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, and the University of Wisconsin – Madison.