Stop and Shop Proposes New Robot

By: Jack Lane (Correspondent)

A new self-driving grocery service from Stop and Shop is rumored to hit the streets in the near future. This service allows people to order a self-driving car full of groceries to their house, and shop directly from the home.

If the service was to come out and get cleared by MassDOT, it would have a variety of fresh produce and also many snacks for customers to choose from.

Mark McGowan, the president of Stop and Shop, says this new technology will revolutionize the way Americans shop.“Many of our customers want the opportunity to make their own choices when it comes to fresh produce, and we’re proud to be the first retailer to engage with Robomart to address our customers’ needs with their cutting-edge solution,” said McGowan.

Stop and Shop has recently been using technology to their advantage in various ways. Along with Marty the Robot helping customers clean up spills, they are also attempting to roll out a new self driving grocery store. “This is one way in which we’re leveraging new technology to make shopping easier for our customers — by essentially bringing the store to them,” said McGowan.

Ali Ahmed, the founder of Robomart, says this idea has been around for generations. “For decades, consumers had the convenience of their local greengrocer and milkman coming door to door, and we believe that by leveraging driverless technology we can recreate that level of convenience and accessibility,” said Ahmed.

Bryan Reimer, an associate of the New England University Transportation Center at MIT, says that the plans won’t get cleared by MassDOT. “I would be surprised if the city would allow such a thing,” said Reimer.

Stop and Shop has been working on this idea for many years now. When the concept was first proposed to MassDOT, self-driving vehicles such as Tesla had not been put on the streets yet. The company is in their last stages of planning and is hoping to start testing and applying to get their machines street legal.

Gina Fiandaca, the Boston transportation commissioner says Stop and Shop must go through the proper channels before their product hits the streets. “Prior to any type of autonomous technology being utilized on City of Boston streets, a company must apply to go through that process so that the city may review the proposal,” said Fiandaca.

Freshman Anishika Chabbra says that even though the service is directed towards adults, she is also very excited for the cars to hit the roads. “ I am very excited to see these vehicles driving around on the road. I might try out this service just for the fun of it, but it would never be a weekly thing,” said Chabbra.

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