'Forward-looking' proposal impresses distinguished guest

12/20/2019 Emily Jankauski

Innovations need backing, and Illinois Center for Transportation’s hope to build a high-speed connected and autonomous vehicle track, known as the Illinois Autonomous and Connected Track, is no different.

ICT’s students, faculty and staff were all smiles posing with Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) during his visit to the Rantoul, Ill. facility on Dec. 20, 2019.
ICT’s students, faculty and staff were all smiles posing with Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) during his visit to the Rantoul, Ill. facility on Dec. 20, 2019.

Hopes remain high after an exciting visit with Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) earlier in December 2019. Let’s delve in and recap those moments:

 

Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett

Sen. Bennett, who represents the state’s 52nd district, including Champaign and Vermillion counties, couldn’t be more “excited” that such innovative technologies, like autonomous driving, are anticipated to be tested at Rantoul’s decommissioned Chanute Air Force Base.

“It was, of course, the training ground for the Tuskegee Airmen,” he said. “How many of the pilots that won our world wars (were) trained here?”

“There’s a source of pride for us to have that in our own backyard,” Sen. Bennett added. “And of course with that leaving 30 years ago, it’s been hard to find the next thing.”

So what’s the next “it” factor? For Sen. Bennett, it’s definitely the high-speed track.

“To have something that starts here be what designates what the roads are made of all over the world ? that would reduce taxpayer dollars but more importantly make things safer for people ? I think that’s really exciting,” he said.

Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett couldn’t help but grin while Punit Singhvi’s, a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign doctoral student shared how to achieve “the perfect recipe” for recycling asphalt binder ― a coat used for patching or paving applications ― by humorously assembling the asphalt to resemble a dessert.
Illinois Sen. Scott Bennett couldn’t help but grin while Punit Singhvi’s, a University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign doctoral student shared how to achieve “the perfect recipe” for recycling asphalt binder ? a coat used for patching or paving applications ? by humorously assembling the asphalt to resemble a dessert.