Project Goals

  • Operate a shuttle in an suburban area in all-weather conditions
  • Increase transportation options and access for those facing transportation barriers, including those with mobility issues and transportation challenges
  • Engage the public to build awareness of CAVs
  • Develop a workforce for CAVs
  • Use lessons learned from this 12-month demonstration for future AV shuttle deployments across Minnesota
Bear Tracks Logo


What is CAV?

CAV stands for connected and automated vehicles.

Connected vehicles use technology to communicate with other vehicles, connect with traffic signals, signs, and other road items, or obtain data from a cloud.

Automated vehicles use technology to steer, accelerate, and brake with little to no human input. Some vehicles still require a human to monitor the roadway, while other vehicles require no human intervention. You may have heard these called “self-driving” vehicles.

The BEAR TRACKS shuttle is equipped with a suite of autonomous systems including 8 LiDAR (light-based radar) sensors that are actively scanning the environment guaranteeing precise positioning and obstacle detection redundancy. The vehicle software combines data received from the sensors with a high-definition map of the route to determine the optimal trajectory of the vehicle taking into account the safety and comfort of passengers.

Bear Tracks Vehicle


  • Safety is and will continue to be our top priority throughout this project.
  • The vehicle will always have a safety operator on board to ensure safe operations and they can take over to manually operate the vehicle when and if needed.
  • The shuttle has multiple layers of sensors, braking systems, emergency stop buttons and other fail-safes, the shuttle detects and avoids obstacles to verify it runs smoothly and safely.
  • All passengers are required to be seated and belted while the vehicle is moving.

Equity, Access, and Mobility

  • The shuttle is equipped with a wheelchair/ADA ramp, tie downs, and lap belt restraints (in compliance with Minnesota State Laws).
  • The shuttle’s route serves a day program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, an area with senior and affordable housing and a community center .
  • The shuttle is limited to ten seated and belted passengers, plus a safety operator.  The vehicle has the capacity for and one passenger using a wheelchair, and 7 additional seated passengers at a time, plus a safety operator.

Economic and Workforce Development

Bear Tracks is working with NewTrax to bring innovative transportation solutions to White Bear Lake. We are working with local officials to become a growing part of our local communities economic growth.

Want more info or want to sign up for email updates on our CAV Program?

Visit Minnesota Department of Transportation


Minnesota Department of Transportation




NewTrax Collaboration in Motion


Destination CAV
Navya Self-driving Made Real
Ramsey County
Minnesota State
White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce Service The Northern Metro
WBL 624
University of Minnesota
Minnesota State