Jacksonville college is first campus in Florida to feature autonomous shuttle
U2C-FSCJ-beep launch FEB2024

U2C-FSCJ-beep launch FEB2024
The FSCJ autonomous vehicle is the indicator of a bigger plan to have the driverless shuttle serving about 10 miles of routes in downtown Jacksonville.

The first autonomous vehicle shuttle service for a college campus in Florida was unveiled at Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ).

The Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) launched the shuttle service featuring the autonomous vehicle at the downtown campus of FSCJ. It’s the first autonomous shuttle carrying students and visitors for a Florida higher education school.

The shuttle vehicle, which can hold about a dozen passengers, is operated by an autonomous solutions company named Beep, based in Florida. It’s coupled with software that runs the self-driving vehicle from Oxa, a company specializing in autonomous technology.

The initial run of the autonomous shuttle is shuffling students, faculty, staff and visitors to FSCJ across its urban core campus that has four buildings stretching about a mile in downtown Jacksonville.

JTA CEO Nat Ford said the FSJC autonomous shuttle foreshadows many more public transit autonomous vehicles that will be coming to Jacksonville.

“We are eager for the FSCJ campus and wider Jacksonville community to experience these firsthand to see the benefits these vehicles bring,” Ford said at a news conference and ceremony marking the initial use of the boxy autonomous vehicle Tuesday at FSCJ.

The initial run of the autonomous vehicle at the FSCJ campus is the first sample of plans for residents and autonomous vehicle expansion in Jacksonville’s urban core. More vehicles are expected to be added in many areas of downtown into 2025. There have also been indications that the Automated Skyway Express, which spans the St. Johns River through much of downtown, will have its monorail passenger cars replaced with the automated vehicles.

FSCJ President John Avendano said he was thrilled to have the first in a series of automated vehicles operating at the downtown campus that has increased its commitment to science and technology in recent years.

“As the community’s college, we are committed to anticipating areas of opportunity and developing ideas to address them, all while elevating the workforce of tomorrow. This partnership is a perfect complement to our National Science Foundation grant, and we are excited for the progress we know it will bring about for our students and neighbors throughout the service area,” Avendano said.

Ultimately, JTA plans to have 10 miles of public transportation automated vehicles dedicated to passengers in the downtown area. Those vehicles will transport passengers to both sides of the St. Johns River along with business and some residential districts on the outskirts of the Jacksonville urban core.

Drew Dixon

Drew Dixon is a journalist of 40 years who has reported in print and broadcast throughout Florida, starting in Ohio in the 1980s. He is also an adjunct professor of philosophy and ethics at three colleges, Jacksonville University, University of North Florida and Florida State College at Jacksonville. You can reach him at [email protected].


  • Ridiculous

    February 20, 2024 at 5:44 pm

    How about actually investing in reliable transportation solutions that also provide jobs to the community in which they live and serve? Instead of using taxpayer money to enrich private corporations? This is more wasteful nonsense from Jacksonville trying to put lipstick on a pig. Looking forward to future contractual issues, increase costs, maintenance issues, all on taxpayer dime instead of just using simple electric vehicle fleets manned by real humans. Ridiculous. FSCJ downtown campus can’t even keep its classes properly staffed.

  • WhatAWaste

    February 26, 2024 at 11:26 am

    Is this supposed to revive FSCJ, the college that is operating without any checks and balances?

Comments are closed.


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