Mobility company picks Mesa’s EVIT campus for autonomous shuttles

Dec 12, 2018, 3:00 PM

(Twitter Photo/@localmotors)...

(Twitter Photo/@localmotors)

(Twitter Photo/@localmotors)

PHOENIX – Autonomous shuttles will make it easier to get around one East Valley campus next year.

Valley-based Local Motors announced Wednesday that the East Valley Institute of Technology in Mesa won its fleet challenge for the Phoenix area.

In January, the mobility company will deploy two of its electric Olli shuttles to the main campus of EVIT, which provides career and technical training for high school students and adults.

Jay Rogers, president and CEO of Local Motors, described the Olli as a “low-speed, cognitive, cute little shuttle.”

Thank you, Local Motors! We are excited to have #Olli on the EVIT Main Campus during the spring semester. #OlliFleet #WeAreEVIT

Posted by East Valley Institute of Technology, EVIT on Wednesday, December 12, 2018

“It’s kind of a box or living room on wheels,” he told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

The shuttles will have a safety steward on board and perform multiple tasks on campus.

“They will run a bunch of different routes,” Rogers said. “They will take students, administrators, professors, teachers, visitors from one place to the next.”

The eight-passenger shuttles can also be used to transport items such as boxed lunches and heavy objects.

“Olli is pretty much an open book to be able to do all the things that happen on a campus, and it doesn’t need a driver,” Rogers said.

Sacramento State University also won a fleet challenge and will get two Ollis in January.

The competitions were open any entity where the shuttles could be put to use, including resorts, hospitals, downtown areas, arenas and assisted living facilities.

“We ran the Olli fleet challenge because … we’re seeing a lot of people who just simply don’t know it’s available, and they don’t know how to use it,” Rogers said.

“So we’re meeting people halfway … or more than halfway.”

Local Motors’ next contest will be in the Washington D.C. area.

“We’ll keep rolling out these challenges and keep seeing Ollis deployed in different areas,” Rogers said.

“We want people to come see it on the EVIT campus. They’re open for business.”

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Madison Spence contributed to this report.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

An abandoned Phoenix golf course will be revived this year by the new owner of the property. (Jim P...

Angela Gonzales/Phoenix Business Journal

Developer to breathe new life into abandoned Phoenix golf course, build 415 homes

An abandoned golf course at the southeast corner of 59th and Southern avenues in Phoenix's Laveen Village could get a new lease on life, after years of intense talks between the property's owner and community residents.

27 minutes ago

A two-year-old girl nearly drowned on Saturday in Chandler. (Pexels photo)...

2-year-old ‘breathing and alert’ after nearly drowning in Chandler

Fire personnel were called to a near-drowning incident in Chandler involving a two-year-old girl on Saturday.

9 hours ago

Exzavion Williams is in jail more than 15 months after a deadly shooting in Phoenix. (MCSO mugshot)...

Arrest made from February 2023 shooting that killed Phoenix teen

Detectives arrested a man for murder and armed robbery in a homicide case from last year, authorities said Saturday.

9 hours ago

dual-branded hotel groundbreaking...

Damon Allred

Dual-branded hotel coming to Phoenix in 2025 breaks ground

Mayor Kate Gallego was among those present for the groundbreaking on Tuesday of a new dual-branded hotel coming soon to Phoenix.

10 hours ago

Two brothers were arrested weeks after a dead body was removed from a car that was on fire in a can...

Pair of brothers arrested weeks after a dead body was found in Phoenix canal

Detectives arrested a pair of brothers after a dead body was found in a car on fire last month in west Phoenix.

11 hours ago

A bear was killed by Arizona game officials after it injured a teenager in northern Arizona. (AZ Ga...

Associated Press

Bear shot dead by Arizona game officers after swipe attack on teen in mountain cabin

A black bear was shot and killed by Arizona fish and game officers after it entered a home through an open door and injured a teenager.

12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.



Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Mobility company picks Mesa’s EVIT campus for autonomous shuttles