A lot of cities want roboshuttles, including D.C. But will they work?

From the Mall to Lincoln, Neb., planners across the United States are pushing slow-rolling roboshuttles as a way to dip their toes into greater automation.

The stubby, bread-box-looking vehicles go about 10 mph, and boosters say they’re a relatively easy and potentially transformative tool for moving people, even as autonomous cars, trucks and minivans continue their development and rollout. Others counsel caution, raising concerns about safety, oversight and economic viability, and fears about adding congestion to roadways and eliminating jobs.

A business group in the District wants one of the self-driving shuttles to connect the Smithsonian, with its millions of visitors, to the city’s resurgent waterfront less than a half mile away.