Amanda Roraff: Michigan Putting the World on Wheels


By now, many of you probably have your tickets to Detroit for the ITS America Annual Meeting.

Think of your trip as a journey to PlanetM – the land where mobility is what we do 24/7. There’s no better place for conversations about the future of intelligent transportation.

PlanetM is a campaign launched two years ago to elevate Michigan as the hub of mobility innovations, with a mission to grow high-profile business sectors. Our goal is to be the global center for mobility, autonomous vehicle technology development, testing and application.

Since spring of 2016, we have made many connections in the U.S. and around the world.  Meanwhile, in Michigan, we support entrepreneurial projects with grants, and the newly established Landing Zone serves as an acceleration for more than 25 affiliated companies working in the mobility space. In addition, we’re collaborating with public, private and philanthropic partners to launch mobility pilots across the state.

Just as Michigan put the world on wheels, we believe our state stands at a historical threshold as the preeminent place for automakers, auto suppliers along with entrepreneurs and innovators who are leading the way in the mobility revolution.

In Michigan, we’re building on our legendary automotive history, innovative spirit, industrial landscape and collaborative atmosphere. And, we look forward to your visit and conversations about what is a revolutionary breakthrough in transportation that will transform how we live, work and travel.

This year at ITSA, I’m looking forward to the technology demonstrations, especially the intersection safety pilot in Detroit with Derq and Michigan Department of Transportation. Be sure to stay tuned during the event for an announcement on how PlanetM will be supporting mobility pilots in the State of Michigan.  

As I travel nationally and internationally and talk about PlanetM, I find the sentiment is always, “No one is doing what you’re doing.” We think so, too. And that gives all of us a deep sense of purpose and pride.

As a lifelong Detroiter, there are so many things I love about the region. If you have some time during your visit think about a bike, hike, picnic on Belle Isle; a visit to Eastern Market (great Bloody Mary at Vivios!); and, a stroll along the River Walk and Woodward Avenue in downtown.

Amanda Roraff is Operations Manager for PlanetM.