Although the U.S. automaker industry has spread throughout the nation, it still has its roots in the Detroit area. Newcomer to the industry, Google, is planning to add to the mix with the opening of a dedicated research and development facility tied to their self-driving car project.
Google’s team announced the new 53,000 square foot facility today. It will be located in Novi, MI, on the west side of the greater Detroit metro area. Google still has some work to do to complete outfitting of the facility, but they will be moving in during the rest of 2016.
Google indicated they have members of their development team already working in the Detroit area and they have established strong ties with a variety of partners. The new facility will give these members of the project team a more permanent place to call home. Google also believes that having their own local facility “will help us collaborate more easily and access Michigan’s top talent in vehicle development and engineering.”
Google says one of the first projects they will be working on in the new research and development center will be prep work on a new fleet of self-driving Chrysler Pacifica hybrid minivans.
source: Google Self-Driving Car Project (Google+)