Japanese multinational automotive manufacturer Toyota Motor Corp. plans to build a prototype “city of the future” at the base of Mount Fuji to test and develop new emerging technologies, The Japan Times newspaper reports citing Toyota Chief Executive Akio Toyoda’s Monday speech in Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
Toyota, world’s second largest automaker, unveiled the audacious plan for what it plans to call “Woven City,” in a reference to its origins as a loom manufacturer.
Akio Toyoda, president of the automaker, described the “Woven City” as a “living laboratory” that will include thousands of residents and will test autonomous vehicles, robotics, personal mobility, smart homes and artificial intelligence in a real-world environment.
The city, to be built on the site of a car factory in Shizuoka Prefecture that is scheduled to close by the end of this year, will begin with two thousand residents for the first few years, and also serve as a home for researchers. Construction is scheduled to start next year
Only fully autonomous, zero-emission vehicles will be allowed to travel on the main streets.
Residents will have in-home robotics to assist their daily lives, with sensor-based AI systems monitoring their health.
Toyota said it has commissioned Danish architect Bjarke Ingels to design the community. Ingels’ firm designed the 2 World Trade Center building in New York and Google LLC’s offices in Silicon Valley and London.