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Allens advises on $9m automated and connected vehicle grant program for VicRoads

19 December 2018

Allens has advised VicRoads on its $9 million Connected and Automated Vehicle Trial Grant Program, through which it has announced a $3.5 million grant to Telstra and Lexus Australia for Australia's first connected vehicle field trial using advanced 4G mobile networks.

The grant will see Telstra use Lexus vehicles equipped with advanced safety systems - such as crash warning systems and lane keeping assist - and enhance these systems using new Telstra 4G technology. The initiative will enable communication between vehicles to alert drivers of hazards and changed road conditions. The vehicles will also communicate with infrastructure via the cloud.

Part of Victoria’s Towards Zero Road Safety Strategy, the Trial Grants Program aims to reduce the incidence of death and serious injury on Victorian roads by researching, evaluating and fostering the adoption of behaviours and technologies that improve road user safety.

A joint Projects & Development and Technology, Media & Telecommunications team from Allens advised on the template Grant Agreement for the program, VicRoads' negotiations with Telstra and Lexus, and amendments to the head funding agreement between VicRoads and ultimate funding agency TAC.

The Telstra and Lexus grant is the first of a number to be announced by VicRoads.

'Automated and connected vehicles are set to transform the way our cities are planned and the way we move within them, ushering in a new era in road safety,' said lead Partner Penny Alexander.

'This trial will have significant implications for both industry and our legislative environment, in which we're seeing numerous complex challenges and opportunities.

'We look forward to continuing our work with VicRoads and other clients at the forefront of connected and automated vehicle development as the industry continues to grow.'

Allens legal team Penny Alexander (Lead Partner), Michael Park (Partner), Amy Byrne (Associate), Leah Wickman (Associate)

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Notes for editors.

Allens is a commercial law firm working throughout Australia and Asia. Through its integrated alliance with Linklaters it provides clients access to 40 offices in 28 countries around the world.