The Future: Self-Driving Cars


I’ve read a great deal about self-driving cars… I’m interested in its potential impact on commercial real estate values. Could it reduce the amount of parking garages and street parking? Could it increase the supply of land for property development?

According to Cite Partners, accidents could decrease 90%, which means we’d see 30,000 less accidents, and more than $800 billion saved per year. We could see greater efficiency on highways and roadways, which could have a beneficial impact on commercial real estate, most notably industrial real estate.

Driverless trucks would allow for faster delivery of goods, notes the report. We could see a substantial impact on residential and office markets, too.

I’m just not willing to bet that we’ll see a time when driverless cars take over the roads and changes everything, as we know it. We’re set in our ways. We’re so used to driving cars ourselves that we’re not likely to let a computer do it for us.

That's just my opinion. And while I’m sure it’ll be exciting for some to try, I don’t see it catching on rapidly…

It’s interesting, though.

Google wants to create driverless carts to “create roads filled with cars that can drive themselves without any human intervention, virtually eliminating human errors that could happen at any moment; making roadways a lot safer than they currently are,” notes Android Headlines. “Google also expects to reduce the cost of current transportation and to make it more accessible for everyone, including handicapped people.”

Unfortunately, there is a great deal of public skepticism. It’ll take a great deal of time for such cars to take over the roads.

It sounds exciting… But again, I’m not willing to bet on big, quick change.