Ford kicks off testing of autonomous cars on Detroit streets

Autonomous Ford Fusion with cameras, sensors and radar equipment from Argo AI. (Jerome Rzucidlo/AmericaJR)

DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. hosted a special event on Wednesday evening called “Fun, Food and Fords.” It was held on the rooftop terrace at The Factory located in Detroit’s Corktown district. 

John Vincent, a Ford Tech Specialist, informed me that Ford started testing self-driving vehicles (Ford Fusions) here in Detroit as of last week. The automaker has partnered with Pittsburgh-based Argo AI for its test fleet. Each Fusion is equipped with new sensors, radars and cameras.

“They have also been testing autonomous vehicles in Ann Arbor with Domino’s pizza delivery and Post-mates food delivery in Miami,” Vincent confirmed. “A few hundred workers already work at the Michigan Avenue Corktown Factory.”     

The Factory at Michigan Avenue and Rosa Parks Boulevard will be home to Ford’s Autonomous Vehicle team.  The Foundry is a former brass factory.  The Factory was a hosiery factory.  The Post was a former Postal building and book depository.

Ford provided us with an update on the progress of The Michigan Central Train Station today.  The second phase is underway now, restoring eight acres of masonry and repairing the steel structure of the historic Beaux-Arts Building. 

Workers will remove 1,200 feet of cornice, the decorative molding on top edge of the building.  Terra cotta cornices will be replaced and 106,000 square feet of roof structure repairs will be completed in the second phase.  Also 1,184 tower windows will be restored to preserve the historic appearance. 

Michigan Central Station was opened in 1913 as the fourth tallest building in the city and tallest train station in the world, accommodating 200 trains per day.  Ford acquired the station in 2018 and it will be transformed to its original grandeur with a target date of five years.

Ford is proud to be in Detroit and co-create the future of mobility in Corktown (the city’s oldest neighborhood).  They plan to harness new technology to re-imagine transportation so that it is better for us and the community.  Michigan Central will play an essential role in creating the future of mobility.    


Ford started testing self-driving vehicles (Ford Fusions) here in Detroit as of last week. (Photo by Mike Wrathell/AmericaJR)

Ford Motor Co. is considered to be on the forefront of self-driving technology. (Jerome Rzucidlo/AmericaJR)

Attendees and Ford representatives at “Fun, Food and Fords” event in Detroit’s Corktown district. (Jerome Rzucidlo/AmericaJR)


“A few hundred workers already work at the Michigan Avenue Corktown Factory,” according to John Vincent at Ford Motor Co. (Jerome Rzucidlo/AmericaJR)
Ford purchased the Michigan Central Train Depot from the Moroun family in 2018. (Jerome Rzucidlo/AmericaJR)


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