Tag Archive: LAST MILE DELIVERY

  1. Prague’s cargo bike boom – a case study for urban last-mile deliveries

    Comments Off on Prague’s cargo bike boom – a case study for urban last-mile deliveries

    Source: Autonomy Network

    Prague remains a key location for cargo bike urban integration, having opened two city center depots. After operating for a sustained period, the success of the scheme can now be evaluated.

    Prague’s two cargo bike depots opened in 2020 and 2021 respectively, being recognized by the 2021 Eurocities Awards as a low-carbon alternative to last-mile van delivery. The principal is simple, a van drops off packages at the central depot, which are then delivered across the city via cargo bike. In Prague, hilly terrain leads to a preference for e-cargo bikes, allowing riders to tackle tougher terrain with ease. Thus far, each depot has delivered approximately 7,000 orders per month, with each location housing up to eight companies.

    Successful collaboration between public and private sectors

    Operating companies pay a small fee to cover depot running costs, and hence, the city administration does not have to contribute a stake in the project outside of the initial construction cost. For a relatively low price, the depot helps to achieve Prague’s long-term vision to promote cycling and change its citizens’ attitudes to this means of transport. The depot also contributes to the city’s pledge to lower its CO2 emissions by 45% by 2030 and to be carbon neutral by 2050.

    The project is a good example of cooperation between different actors. The pilot project was approved by the city council based on a study by the Prague Institute of Planning and Development. It took only three months to execute the proposal. Ekolo, the company setting up and running the depot, attributes this success to intense cooperation between the logistics firm and city-run companies.

    Domestic firm (Dámejídlo, Zásilkovna, Rohlík or WEDO) and international firms (DHL, Dascher, GLS) both profit from the innovation. Twelve enterprises use the two depots at present, but Adam Scheinherr, mayor’s deputy for transportation, is in talks with companies that could not be accommodated in the first depots. A representative of Ekolo started helping with similar cargo bike projects in London, Copenhagen, and Lille.

    Potential to inspire future action and lessons learned

    As the largest depots of their kind, Prague’s cargo bike scheme offers both a point of inspiration and a case study from which to learn. Of course, it is commonly accepted that electric cargo bikes are an optimal delivery vehicle; speedy, quiet, low polluting, cheaper, accessible, etc. however, new insight can now be utilized to further improve customer and driver experience.

    The key lessons learned for future projects were:

    • More depots are required: This will minimize driver distance and reduce delivery times.
    • Unsustainable trends must still be recognized: Overconsumption and the negative impact of deliveries and packaging are still prominent issues for the majority of parcel lifetimes. More localized production is required.
    • Worker experience must be improved: One recent example concerns an online grocery store, Rohlik.cz, one of the companies using the depot. The firm reduced the couriers’ wages (despite having almost doubled its profit last year), sparking public concern. Other difficulties of this job came to light, namely long working hours, lack of social security, and uncertain wages.
  2. Cargobike Project in Barcelona

    Leave a Comment

    Across Europe’s cities, the demand for delivery services is increasing. But these deliveries affect urban life as they add to traffic congestion, noise and pollution and many cities are now trying out alternative modes of transport that could help. One of these alternatives is the electric cargo bike, as demonstrated in Barcelona through the GrowSmarter  project. 

    What is known as ‘last-mile’ deliveries involves the transport of goods and services from a depot on the outskirts into the city centre for instance by (e)cargobikes. Such deliveries are are expected to grow by more than 16% annually from 2019 to 2027.

    In Barcelona, Spain, a project called GrowSmarter was aimed at addressing the spike in small parcel deliveries resulting from an increase in online shopping. The project included a 2 year pilot for the development of a delivery service using electric bikes to businesses and consumers in the old town.

    The old town is a densely-populated area with narrow streets, making it hard for delivery vans to access. Due to traffic regulations, it is only allowed to deliver by standard vehicles in the morning and at night. Bikes however aren’t subject to delivery windows. “This combination makes it ideal to do these deliveries with electric bikes,” said Gonzalo Cabezas, project manager at Barcelona City Council.

    Delivery

    The team worked with a small e-bike delivery company called Vanapedal which provided the service. The city council set up a distribution centre at the edge of the old town which Vanapedal could use free of charge. Vans from different shipping services would deposit packages for last-mile delivery by electric bike or tricycle. In return, Vanapedal had to provide business data to help gauge the project’s success.

    Three tricycles out of the initial nine bikes used were equipped with sensors to take measurements too. “We installed some equipment that included environmental sensors and there was a geolocation sensor to know exactly where the tricycles were,” said Cabezas.

    The trial was completed last December and was deemed a success. During the two years, 200,000 packages were delivered, and the rate of successful deliveries was 92.7%. Since the service was provided to a pre-defined area, it allowed the delivery people to get to know their main clients and reschedule deliveries at a convenient time.

    “The success rate of deliveries by cargobike was higher than the success rate of standard providers. We are quite happy with this solutions and it works financially from a business perspective,” said Cabezas.

    There was also a clear environmental benefit. Carbon dioxide emissions were reduced by 95.9% and there was a 21.7% reduction in noise. Vanapedal is now continuing with the delivery service and there are also plans to replicate the scheme elsewhere in the city.

    Find the article @Horizon Magazine

     

Campaign success

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.

Member profile

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.