How Autonomous Vehicles Will Drive Our Budgets

Big changes are underway that will affect how Massachusetts residents get around. Companies are racing to bring autonomous vehicles to the market as quickly as possible. Self-driving vehicles are already on the streets in Boston’s Seaport District for testing purposes. We can expect them in more regular use as early as 2020 and widely available by 2023. With this new technology just around the corner, we must prepare to ensure that Massachusetts realizes the benefits of this new technology, while minimizing its potential downsides.

This report assesses the economic and fiscal impacts of the transition to self-driving vehicles on Massachusetts, its cities and towns, and its households. It also identifies policy options to mitigate certain budget and economic impacts and allow the Commonwealth to reap the full benefits of this transition. It is the first such analysis for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and it is critical as self-driving vehicles start to become a reality in our communities.