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Driving the Future in
The cutting edge of autonomous vehicle research and development
Autonomous vehicles are changing the world we live in, and Greater Phoenix is leading the way in supporting the development and testing of this transformative technology.
Greater Phoenix offers shorter commute times than peer markets, more than 300 days of sunshine annually, and fewer days with significant weather interruptions.
Because of the gridded road system, the test environment for autonomous vehicles is more forgiving. The city is dedicated to continued investment in street infrastructure and warm temperatures eliminate freeze and thaw potholes.
Greater Phoenix offers a robust ecosystem with a significant presence from advanced technology companies. The region also has a longstanding automotive R&D infrastructure with many major automakers.
Greater Phoenix offers a pro-business regulatory environment that encourages autonomous vehicle development. Limited reporting and permitting means more time for testing on the roads.
Greater Phoenix offers lower annual operating costs than Dallas and San Jose with cheaper real estate and benefit costs compared to peer markets. Greater Phoenix also offers several quality incentives to further decrease operating costs.
Arizona Advanced Manufacturing Institute
Located at Mesa Community College, the Arizona Advanced Manufacturing Institute (AzAMI) offers industry certifications; stackable credentials that are competency-based with degree and certificate programs; flexible models of delivery; and portable labs for on-site training to ensure the region has the necessary pipeline of talent for present and future companies. By partnering with leaders in the manufacturing sector, AzAMI can ensure programs meet the needs of the industry
Program and Career Options
- Additive manufacturing processes
- Aerospace manufacturing technology
- Automation & robotic technology
- Electronics technology
- Electrical/Mechanical drafting
- Manufacturing engineering
- Machinist apprenticeship
- Welding technology
Through a partnership with Boeing, AzAMI offers an eight-day Cable Harness Wiring Boot Camp. The program was developed with Boeing to ensure students learn the skills needed. Upon successful completion of the bootcamp, students are reimbursed the cost of tuition, receive an industry certification, and the opportunity to interview with aerospace companies in Greater Phoenix.
Greater Phoenix Talent Pipeline
Below are total numbers of non-distance program completions at colleges and universities in Greater Phoenix with degree programs relevant to the development of autonomous vehicles. The region produced over 4,500 graduates in these fields during the 2018 to 2019 school year. The region’s universities are committed to supplying the workforce needed to enable companies to scale in the region. Comparison data for peer markets has been provided below.
Autonomous Vehicles Supply Chain
Industry leaders have nothing but positive things to say about conducting critical research and development in Greater Phoenix. The companies below represent a sample of the firms currently operating in the region, showing high success rates and continuous growth.
Autonomous R&D in Greater Phoenix
Arizona is a leading state for cutting-edge research and the development of autonomous vehicles. Listed below are the firms developing autonomous technologies in Greater Phoenix.
The table below shows employment for the following occupations in the selected metros.
|Occupation||Phoenix||Austin||Dallas/ Fort Worth||Reno||San Jose|
|General and Operations Managers||39,595||19,205||60,936||14,065||17,230|
|Software Developers, Applications||13,240||13,699||34,256||15,672||52,353|
|Assemblers and Fabricators, All Other, Including Team Assemblers||12,051||3,292||27,321||6,223||8,865|
|Industrial Truck and Tractor Operators||9,012||4,612||23,609||43,275||1,522|
|Software Developers, Systems Software||7,812||7,652||11,986||28,694||28,523|
|First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers||7,295||2,672||13,429||6,758||3,173|
|Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers||6,302||4,133||15,800||4,121||5,158|
|Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers||4,156||1,889||9,873||11,955||1,578|
The Annual Business Operating Cost Analysis has been prepared using the following parameters as an estimate for autonomous vehicle research and development operations in competitor markets. Component and custom analyses to match your company’s operations can be provided upon request.
Assumptions – R&D
- $5,000,000 personal property investment
- 50,000-square-foot High Tech, Lease
- Utilities (per month):
- Electricity: 75KW, 30,000KWh
- Water/Wastewater: 3,000cf, 5/8 meter
- 100 jobs (Bureau of Labor Statistics equivalent occupations)
|Software Developers, Applications||20|
|Software Developers, Systems Software||15|
|Computer Hardware Engineers||14|
|Computer Systems Analysts||10|
|Electrical and Electronics Engineering Tech||5|
|General and Operations Managers||1|
Even with the highly competitive tax environment in Greater Phoenix and Arizona, there are several tax incentives that can be utilized to mitigate operating costs. Applicable incentives will depend on actual project parameters and varying program qualifications and requirements as determined by the Arizona Commerce Authority for various autonomous vehicle companies located in Greater Phoenix.
Quality Jobs Tax Credit
Quality jobs provides tax credits to employers creating a minimum number of net new quality jobs and making a minimum capital investment in Arizona. The Quality Jobs Tax Credit offers up to $9,000 of Arizona income or premium tax credits over a three-year period for each net new quality job. The tax credit is equal to $3,000 per qualified employment position, employed for each full taxable year of continuous employment for three years. If the allowable tax credit exceeds the income or premium tax liability, any unused amount may be carried forward for up to five consecutive taxable years. Employers must cover 65% of employee health insurance premium costs. For a full overview of additional program qualifications download the complete autonomous vehicles ecosystem report.
Parks & Recreation
Greater Phoenix is home to hundreds of parks and hundreds of miles of hiking, biking and walking trails. Greater Phoenix has the largest municipal park in the United States, South Mountain Park. South Mountain Park covers more than 16,000 acres. Other large parks in the region include the White Tank Mountain Regional Park, Camelback Mountain, Piestewa Peak and the Superstition Mountains. Notable walking trails in the region include the canal system, Tempe Town Lake, the Greenbelt and Papago Park.
Cost of Living
Greater Phoenix provides the right combination of affordability, size and scalability. Compared to other metros, Greater Phoenix is less expensive or competitive across all major expenses.
The calculator below will give you some great insight into the potential savings opportunities for those looking to relocate to Greater Phoenix without changing career paths. You can still work within the Autonomous Vehicles sector in Greater Phoenix and give yourself an even better quality of life.