Shared Autonomous Vehicles (SAVs) have the potential to transform the way public transportation is provided. For many small- and medium-sized cities, it may be possible to strongly supplement or entirely replace public transit with such vehicles.
A team of researchers from the Technical University of Berlin created a traffic simulation of Cottbus, Germany, which has 100,000 inhabitants. The model examined the impact of a Demand Responsive Transport (DRT) system, in which SAVs would be deployed to meet travelers' needs. The system could either be stop-based, in which travelers would have to walk to some nearby pickup point, or door-to-door, in which travelers would be able to call the service to a precise location. As a baseline, the current fixed-route transit services were compared.