This conference will be 17th of a series of successful conferences that began in 1985 in Miami, Florida. Since that time subsequent conferences have become the meeting place of professionals from around the world to share project experience, advanced technologies, and innovative ideas on the planning, design, implementation, and operations of automated people movers and automated transit systems. Conference attendees will include planners, engineers, APM and transit system owners and operators, inventors, government officials, system suppliers, prospective owners, educators, and students as they reflect on the past and look to the future.
Chicago, Illinois will be the host city for the 17th International Conference on Automated People Movers and Automated Transit Systems and the theme for the conference is “Automated Transit for Smart Mobility.”
Chicago is the 3rd largest city in the United States and it has always been a global hub for transportation. From the earliest explorers who arrived by ship, through the development of the U.S. passenger and freight railroad network, to the role that Chicago O’Hare played in air travel, Chicago is a city built around transportation. The 1893 Chicago World’s Fair was the site of the first moving walkway and locomotives, trollies, and other transportation innovations were displayed in the Transportation Building, and then at the 1933-34 Chicago World’s Fair, dream cars of that era, the Zephyr, and the Sky Ride were showcased. The Chicago public transit system is one of the finest in the country. It is difficult to say what the future of transportation will be, whether it is automated urban rail transit lines, autonomous transit vehicles, or other new technologies, it is safe to say that Chicago will have a key role in future transportation.
For several decades, Chicago O’Hare International Airport was the busiest airport in the world and over the past several years several multi-billion projects have been undertaken to modernize and expand the airport to serve future needs. One of the projects is the automated people mover system. The original the Airport Transit System (ATS) opened at Chicago O’Hare International Airport in 1993 as a 2.5 mile (4 km) long system that connected all four terminals with remote parking lots. It is now undergoing modernization and expansion. As part of a larger project involving a new integrated transit center, the ATS project includes replacement of the existing vehicles, upgrading the infrastructure, and extending the line to a new Multi-Modal facility for rental cars and connections to Metra, the Chicago regional commuter rail system. The new modernized ATS will open in 2020.