DRIVE Arizona

Timeline: Sept 1, 2023 – March 1, 2025
Award: $1.747,708 Stage 1 Planning Grant & Demonstration
Applicant: Arizona Commerce Authority

A United Effort for a Safer Tomorrow

In a remarkable team project, key organizations including the Arizona Commerce Authority, Maricopa County Department of Transportation (MCDOT), City of Phoenix, and Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) along with groups like Chicanos Por La Causa are working together on an exciting initiative to improve road safety and efficiency across Arizona using cellular vehicle to everything (C-V2X) technology.

This initiative is supported by companies like Verizon and HDR Engineering, Inc., with academic support from the University of Arizona (UA), and Arizona State University (ASU), and public sector support from entities like Valley Metro, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), and the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG). Their goal? To tap into the latest technological advancements to make transportation in the area safer, better connected, and more eco-friendly.

This ambitious effort aims to transform how we think about and use roads in Arizona by leveraging the innovation to benefit the community and the environment alike.

Project Deliverables: A Roadmap to Innovation in cellular connected vehicle arena

Completed Milestones:

  • Evaluation Plan (Dec 15, 2023)
  • Data Management Plan (Dec 15, 2023)

Forthcoming Objectives:

  • Conduct a Technical Demonstration
  • Host six Listening Sessions with members of historically disadvantaged communities
  • Initiate Six Workshops with public-private sector industry representatives
  • Draft Implementation Plan by Sept 1, 2024
  • Finalize Implementation Plan by Feb 28, 2025
  • Produce ongoing Quarterly Reports to monitor progress

Paving the Way with Advanced Technology

The project is designed to build upon the success of the pioneering ADOT-MAG-Verizon pilot, which established more inclusive community-based partnerships to demonstrate the potential of next-generation Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) applications using 4G/5G networks. These efforts will enhance safety and mobility, reduce travel time, promote travel conformability, and improve the environmental landscape of the region.

Unique Use Cases Under the Spotlight

This pilot will address some of the most challenging aspects of C-V2X including:

  • Back of Queue Warning
  • Work Zone Warning
  • Transit Signal Priority
  • Exploratory pilot for Vulnerable Road User (VRU) warnings


The Project Footprint:

Spanning up to 50 intersections and covering approximately 60 miles of key roadways across metropolitan Phoenix, this initiative will target improving the commuting experiences for thousands of travelers. Key locations in the region include:

  • Community of Anthem
  • I-17
  • The Buckeye Corridor
  • Transit Route 72-Scottsdale Road; and
  • Several locations with the City of Phoenix


Figure: Drive Arizona Project Footprint

Target Population & Scope:

In order to explore and evaluate the technology’s effectiveness and scalability in a real-world setting, the project will equip 1,000 Department of Transportation cell phones, some of which will be augmented with RTK receivers for precise VRU warnings, to explore and evaluate the technology's effectiveness and scalability.

Unveiling the Scope of Work: Three Critical Components

  • Technical Demonstration: Led by Dr. Larry Head at the University of Arizona, focusing on a scalable solution for CV applications.
  • Community Engagement and work force development: Including listening sessions to incorporate diverse community input and focus groups on workforce development.
  • Planning and Project Management: Featuring bi-weekly reviews, partner agreements, and comprehensive reporting to ensure transparency and collaborative progress.

Community at the Core

Emphasizing community involvement, the project promises to engage with both public and private sector stakeholders, including those from historically disadvantaged communities, ensuring a broad spectrum of voices are heard and integrated into the development process.

The Path Forward

As we start this project to revolutionize Arizona's roadways through technological innovation and collaborative efforts between government agencies, planning organizations, and telecommunication, academia, and consulting community, the project stands as a testament to what can be achieved when communities, industries, and institutions come together to implement cutting-edge technologies for the good of or traveling public. Stay tuned as we continue to establish pathways to safer, smarter, and more sustainable transportation solutions for Arizona.


Special thanks to the project partners:


Contact Us:

For more information or comments about DRIVE Arizona project, please contact [email protected].