"The lanes would be helpful for the current state of autonomous vehicles, which still cannot operate safely with human-driven vehicles under all traffic and weather conditions, said Bryant Walker Smith, a University of South Carolina law professor who studies vehicle automation.
But they also run contrary to another school of thought in the industry, that systems being tested are getting better and soon will be able to navigate roads with cars driven by humans, he said.
“The tension is one side is saying ‘if we build it they will come,’ and the other side is saying ‘we’re coming. Why are you building?'” Walker Smith said.
Tech and auto companies that favor running the vehicles with normal traffic seem to be winning, Walker Smith said, although that has eased as expectations for autonomous vehicles have become more realistic. The whole industry slowed down after an Uber autonomous testing vehicle ran down and killed a woman in Tempe, Arizona, in March of 2018."