The state of Michigan is taking the future of automotive seriously as it broke ground on a new, state-of-the-art autonomous proving ground site through the American Center for Mobility. Governor Rick Snyder was in attendance for the ceremony, reiterating its importance to the future of automotive and future product development in the state.
“Michigan is reinventing the way the world moves. We are second-to-none when it comes to automotive and technological innovation, and we remain committed to making sure that stays true for generations to come,” Snyder said. “This world-class facility will put Michigan at the forefront of the autonomous movement to ensure we lead the way as the auto industry transforms into the mobility industry.”
The goal of the new site is to secure Michigan as a mecca for autonomous driving and future mobility and it will be used by private, government and academia to develop and innovate.
“We envision the American Center for Mobility as a global hub for connected and automated vehicle technologies supported by Michigan’s high concentration of automotive expertise,” said John Maddox, president and CEO of the Center. “We are excited to be partnering with the state of Michigan to establish a fully-capable, real-world testing and innovation center that will be instrumental in putting self-driving cars on America’s roads.”
The 335-acre site is formerly the Willow Run assembly plant utilized by Chevrolet and General Motors, which went offline in 1992. In 2010, it was transformed into one massive warehouse, which was then leased to GM for parts distribution. Now, GM will more than likely return to the historic site to pen another chapter in its long history with the state of Michigan.