March 14, 2024

Waymo’s Co-CEO Announces Robotaxi Expansion To Los Angeles And Austin

Waymo, the autonomous vehicle company under Alphabet, has announced the expansion of its robotaxi service to Los Angeles and Austin. 

Robotaxis hit LA this week

Tekedra Mawakana, the co-CEO of Waymo, announced the expansion at SXSW on Wednesday.

Los Angeles, known for its sprawling highways and traffic, will witness the commencement of Waymo’s service in a 63-square-mile area spanning from Santa Monica to downtown.

Initially free, these rides will gradually transition to a paid model, in line with regulatory approvals from the California Public Utilities Commission. 

The company aims to integrate over 50,000 people from its LA waitlist into this service, enhancing its footprint in one of America’s largest cities.

Read: Los Angeles Black Mayor Calls For Local Control Over Driverless Vehicles

Austin launch

In contrast, the vibrant city of Austin will experience Waymo’s fully autonomous rides across a 43-square-mile area. 

The service in Austin, starting later this year, will open its doors to the public after rigorous testing and validation phases. 

Waymo’s operation in Austin reflects its commitment to safe and reliable autonomous technology, having already driven over 10 million miles without human intervention.

The launch in these cities follows Waymo’s successful operations in Phoenix and San Francisco, showcasing the company’s relentless pursuit of innovation and public convenience.

“Once an unimaginable future, autonomous driving is now a real-world way of getting around for tens of thousands of people each week,” said Mawakana.

“After achieving key milestones in each city, we’re so excited to bring the safety, comfort and delight of our Waymo One service to more people in Los Angeles and Austin this year.”

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Sara Keenan

Tech Reporter at POCIT. Following her master's degree in journalism, Sara cultivated a deep passion for writing and driving positive change for Black and Brown individuals across all areas of life. This passion expanded to include the experiences of Black and Brown people in tech thanks to her internship experience as an editorial assistant at a tech startup.