About the Transportation Research Institute
The UA's Transportation Research Institute, or TRI, is equipped with the interdisciplinary expertise necessary to address the challenges of an ever-evolving transportation ecosystem.
The TRI was established in 2016. Ann Wilkey serves as associate director. Larry Head, professor of systems and industrial engineering, Eric Betterton, professor of atmospheric sciences, and Chris Nelson, professor of planning, are among others who contribute research expertise to the Institute. The TRI succeeds ATLAS, an engineering-focused research center UA launched in 1998 to advance transportation.
Today, the “transportation ecosystem," as it is referred to, is much more complex. To be successful in creating innovative solutions to transportation problems, the TRI needs to consider mobility, safety, and the environment all at once. For example, the average urban commuter in the United States lost 42 hours stuck in traffic congestion last year, causing an estimated cost of $160 billion, which includes lost productivity, gas burned while idling, and wear and tear on vehicles. Likewise, in 2015, there were roughly 34,000 fatal car accidents in the United States, and more than 3,000 of those were related to texting.
As the second state to authorize legislation for autonomous vehicle testing, after Nevada, the state of Arizona now has the opportunity to create economic growth while addressing a national challenge. With the Transportation Research Institute, the UA has positioned itself to lead these efforts statewide.
For more information, contact: