The Greenwich public are given the first opportunity to test driverless shuttle vehicles that could eventually be rolled out across the country.
Around 100 people will travel on the shuttle over a two-mile stretch near the 02 already used by pedestrians and cyclists.
It is hoped smaller neighbourhoods in Greenwich will benefit from public transport.
Five cameras and three lasers will help will help the shuttle navigate along a riverside path at speeds of 10mph, but there will be a trained person on board who can operate the vehicle.
Dr Graeme Smith, chief executive of Oxbotica, which is developing the electric vehicles, told the Press Association: “This needs to be like any other form of transportation. It shouldn’t be a white-knuckle ride for passengers.
“We know we’ve got the software right when the journeys are unremarkable.”
Officials behind the £8 million GATEway Project believe the first paying passengers could use the system by 2019 on a trial basis, and it could eventually be rolled out to similar locations across the country.
Simon Tong, a research scientist at TRL, which is leading the programme, said: “Driverless vehicles could be part of smart cities.
“Existing transport hubs that are well used like the Tube, the Thames Clippers and the Emirates Air Line cable car that we have here, they’re all situated at one end of the Greenwich peninsular but there’s lots of businesses and residences that are much further away than that.
Last week the Government announced plans for a £100 million investment in testing infrastructure to develop autonomous driving.