Self-driving tech company opening location in Alliance

TuSimple truck courtesy

TuSimple, a self-driving technology company that focuses on heavy-duty trucks, is coming to AllianceTexas’ Mobility Innovation Zone (MIZ) in north Fort Worth.

Hillwood announced Oct. 28 the today that San Diego-based TuSimple,has secured property in the MIZ.

The MIZ was launched last year as a first-of-its-kind “do tank” in collaboration with Deloitte, leading the nation in smart infrastructure deployment to create a digital and physical commercialization environment for partner companies.

The Hillwood-developed truck terminal will support the company’s continued expansion into Texas and connects into TuSimple’s cross country autonomous freight corridor. The MIZ will also allow TuSimple to add new autonomous trucking operations within the “Texas Triangle,” and support freight movements between Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and Austin. TuSimple currently ships freight for customers using autonomous trucks, moving from Arizona to Texas, and this new facility will enable the self-driving technology company to add new shipping lanes in 2021.

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“We’re pleased to welcome TuSimple to Texas, adding the company to our nation-leading roster of firms engaged in the implementation of next generation mobility platforms,” said Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. “The AllianceTexas Mobility Innovation Zone provides the perfect infrastructure, landscape and scale for the company to launch their national expansion and ‘Texas Triangle’ operations.”

Hillwood and TuSimple will begin construction on the project in November 2020, with an expected completion by March of 2021. The new facility will house autonomous truck operations, service and administrative support. The building will feature technology service bays, in addition to general office space.

“TuSimple is the perfect partner for Hillwood in our efforts to accelerate innovative mobility technologies within the MIZ,” said Ross Perot Jr., chairman of Hillwood. “As the industry leader in the deployment of autonomous long-haul truck routes, TuSimple brings this technology to AllianceTexas today, ensuring the MIZ will be a global focal point in the commercialization of next generation logistics solutions.”

Located on Eagle Parkway near Fort Worth Alliance Airport, TuSimple is the first autonomous trucking company to establish roots in the AllianceTexas Mobility Innovation Zone. TuSimple joins other MIZ companies, including Bell, BNSF and Deloitte, to support the initiative’s mission in creating the world’s premier, commercially-driven platform to test, scale and commercialize technologies and solutions related to the movement of goods and people.

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“TuSimple is building the world’s first autonomous freight network and an important part of our strategy is to secure suitable locations for our terminals, and the Mobility Innovation Zone is exactly what we were looking for,” said Lee White, Vice President of Strategy, TuSimple.

The new operational facility will be the first urban logistics center in Texas for TuSimple. TuSimple’s existing Texas location provides dedicated support to UPS.

“We are thrilled that TuSimple has chosen to partner with Hillwood at the AllianceTexas Mobility Innovation Zone,” said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price. “TuSimple’s move to AllianceTexas underscores Fort Worth’s prominent role as a global destination for companies engaged in mobility innovation, while furthering our success in creating a business environment where these companies can grow and thrive in collaborative partnership with the public sector.”

Deloitte’s Future of Mobility team serves the entire ecosystem of companies working in and around mobility.

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“Automation technologies will transform how we plan, source, make and deliver goods across the globe.  We are excited to work with Hillwood and other MIZ collaborators in providing the right environment for deploying autonomous trucking to scale,” said Rasheq Zarif, Future of Mobility Leader at Deloitte. “AllianceTexas is expediting the commercial scaling of automated trucking through various transportation modes, a diverse set of stakeholders, and a collaborative approach to the business-driven advancement of automated logistics technologies.”

TuSimple plans to demonstrate driverless operations in 2021 and aims to transform the $800 billion U.S. trucking industry by enhancing safety, increasing efficiency and significantly reducing operating costs.

Partnering with TuSimple in the launch of the Autonomous Freight Network in July are UPS, Penske Truck Leasing, U.S. Xpress, who operates one of the largest carrier fleets in the country, and McLane, a Berkshire Hathaway company and one of the largest supply chain services leaders in the United States. UPS owns a stake in TuSimple and the company

The Autonomous Freight Network will roll-out in three phrases, and lays the groundwork for self-driving autonomous trucks to become commercially available by 2024, according to the company:

  • Phase I (2020-21) will offer service between the cities of PhoenixTucsonEl PasoDallas, Houston, and San Antonio.
  • Phase II (2022-23) will expand AFN service from Los Angeles to Jacksonville and connect the east coast with the west.
  • Phase III (2023-24) will expand driverless operations nationwide adding major shipping routes throughout the lower 48 states allowing customers to utilize their own TuSimple equipped autonomous trucks on the AFN by 2024.