The Danish legislative process for approval to operate self-driving vehicles on public streets is one of the most restrictive in the EU, and includes many parallel approval steps involving the Danish Transport Authority, The Danish Road Directorate, and a third party safety assessor. In the LINC project the application, including evaluations from the third party assessor, was sent to the Danish Road Directorate in June 2020. Several additional questions from the authorities had to be answered, and the official processing of the application could not start until November 2020.
After the authority's review of the application, a four weeks long public hearing period, and a processing period, the Danish minister of transport declared the test with self-driving shuttles on DTU Lyngby Campus approved on March 18th, 2021. This was the starting point of an intense period for the LINC, including education of test drivers, mapping of the route with the vehicles, and test driving. The final approval to start operation with passengers on board at DTU Lyngby Campus was made by the assessor on April 12th.
In total, the LINC project has spent around 30 calendar months to get permission to run the self-driving shuttles on public streets on SAE level 3 (i.e. with a safety driver on-board). After a long struggle, this important milestone was achieved by the project, and on April 19th the rubber could hit the asphalt, with the passengers on board, for the first time.