ARIZONA NEWS

Waymo expands robotaxi service in Phoenix, Scottsdale, East Valley

May 4, 2023, 8:33 AM | Updated: 10:25 am

PHOENIX – Waymo announced a major expansion for its metro Phoenix ride-hailing service on Thursday, doubling the area of operation for the self-driving taxis.

Waymo One is now available over 180 square miles covering most of Chandler and Tempe and parts of Phoenix, Scottsdale and Mesa, the autonomous vehicle company said in a press release.

The Google spinoff also announced it was expanding its San Francisco service.

“Waymo One remains the only and largest 24/7 fully autonomous ride-hailing service in the world — serving thousands of rides in multiple key markets — and we’re scaling quickly,” Saswat Panigrahi, Waymo chief product officer, said in the release.

“These latest expansions in metro Phoenix and San Francisco will help us provide more trips to more riders in more places and are a big step forward on the road to growing our business.”

After years of testing in the East Valley, Waymo One became the world’s first commercial autonomous taxi service in 2020. The original service area covered 50 square miles centered around Chandler. A second zone in and around downtown Phoenix, including Sky Harbor International Airport, debuted last year.

The new Valley map creates an unbroken service area that includes destinations such as Old Town Scottsdale, Scottsdale Fashion Square, Arizona State University’s Tempe campus and Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Garden.

“When it comes to transportation options, convenience, safety and efficiency are key for Scottsdale’s 9.7 million annual visitors,” Stephanie Pressler, director of community and government affairs at Experience Scottsdale, said in the release.

“Experience Scottsdale is excited that our visitors and residents alike will soon have a new option in Waymo as they move throughout Old Town Scottsdale’s shopping, entertainment, historic and arts districts, as well as travel to and from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.”

Waymo One also extended service to the new 24th Street PHX SkyTrain station at Sky Harbor on Thursday. The robotaxis already were picking up and dropping off passengers at the airport’s 44th Street station.

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Waymo expands robotaxi service in Phoenix, Scottsdale, East Valley