Kroger is investing in state-of-the-art automated grocery fulfillment centers with help from Ocado, though the grocer doesn't expect to see changes until the first one comes online sometime in 2021. "With shopper receptiveness to digital innovation limited mainly by retailers' imagination, Kroger's new facilities will be coming online about the time that expectations for speed, accuracy, assortment and freshness are hitting new highs," Mike Troy writes.
General Motors has patented a smarter, less obtrusive stop/start system. Existing systems save gas but annoy drivers when they're triggered frequently, so GM developed one that uses cameras, GPS and machine learning to determine whether the vehicle's engine should be shut off, based on the surroundings and traffic conditions.
Most drivers now get calls via vehicle interfaces, and half use built-in navigation systems. These are two examples of how the automotive industry is changing as it embraces "computers on wheels," writes
Sophie Zoria, adding that soon, "The most crucial factor when looking for a new vehicle will be its communications with other vehicles and infrastructure, as well as personal assistants."
To cut down on holiday stress, more shoppers are planning to order their groceries online, according to a report from ServiceChannel. Half of online grocery shoppers say they will purchase online more than usual during the holidays, and 63% said they would be somewhat likely to order a fully prepared meal online.
The Virginia Department of Transportation will open express lanes in Northern Virginia's Interstate 395 on Sunday. The tolled lanes will require an E-ZPass or E-ZPass Flex, the latter of which will make them free for vehicles carrying at least three passengers.
A groundbreaking ceremony has officially launched a project that will complete the Interstate 540 outer loop in the Raleigh, N.C., area. Toll revenue and a federal loan will fund the project, which has two phases scheduled for completion by 2023 and 2029, respectively.
The Fort Bend County Grand Parkway Toll Road Authority in Texas is working on the design of connector roads between the Westpark Tollway and the Grand Parkway's northbound roads. Construction on the $46.5 million project is expected to start in mid-2020.
New Jersey's Burlington County Bridge Commission, which oversees the Tacony-Palmyra and Burlington-Bristol toll bridges crossing the Delaware River, has elected Troy Singleton as its new chairman. Singleton replaces John Comegno, who had been in the leadership role since 2007.
Toll lanes in Virginia are an example of how such projects can be successful in and around Washington, D.C., Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn said. "We have to recognize [that] somehow, some way we have to pay for whatever it is that we're going to construct," he said.
Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont's transportation proposal that includes highway tolls likely will face headwinds because of timing and division among lawmakers, Dan Haar writes. Holding a vote on tolls during an election year will be difficult to achieve, Haar writes.
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