Tag Archive: urban logistics

  1. SUMP Decision Makers Summary now available in Polish

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    Source: Eltis, H. Figg

    Urban Mobility Observatory, Eltis, has recently added a Polish-language version of its Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP) (2nd edition). Global interest in developing and implementing a SUMP has increased following the publication of its Guidelines and Summaries. Local settings, governance, and transport conditions in cities around the world have all been considered as principles in the plan.

    In order to make the Guidelines for developing and implementing a SUMP (2nd edition) easier to use and more widespread, the interactive summary has been translated into 16 different languages to include Polish. The 10-page summary translates as an accessible user guide for governing figures wishing to utilise the SUMP Guidelines (2nd edition).

    The summary goes some way to explain the foundations of SUMP; its principles, planning processes and the four SUMP phases are all shared. Those accessing the summary are additionally given an insight into the benefits of SUMP and guidance on how to start the plan. In addition, it can also be used as an introduction to urban mobility planning.

    The original SUMP Summary for decision-makers can be downloaded in English here. All current and future translations are available on the translation page here.

  2. European Commission recommendations for SUMP national support programmes

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    Source: Eltis, M. Collings

    430 European cities to receive support to develop their Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs)

    A recommendation was adopted on 8 March by the European Commission, designed to help member states to support their cities and towns in improving urban mobility and cutting transport emissions. The 430 major cities along the trans-European transport network will receive support to develop their SUMPs.

    National programmes are recommended to support the planning and implementation of urban mobility, managed by a dedicated office. Cities should expect support in the form of guidance materials, traningin programmes and capacity building, alongside technical expertise and financial support.

    Cities and towns will be encouraged to participate in peer learning and networking, and the sharing of good practices. Coordinated awareness-raising campaigns are also envisaged. Representatives from national programme management offices will be invited to work with the new Expert Group on Urban Mobility. Member States are expected to inform the Commission annually of actions taken in the light of the Recommendation.

    Under the recommendation, the concept of SUMPs has been updated to integrate latest policy developments and strategies to make use of new mobility services, address climate change, and reduce road fatalities in cities. These policy developments prioritise such affordable and sustainable transport modes as shared mobility services, walking, cycling, public transport and zero-emission urban logistics. The update to the SUMPs concept is a result of the commitment to the European Commission’s 2021 Urban Mobility Framework.

  3. Reducing car size: the quest for finer vehicles

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    Source: Riff Reporter, A. Reidl

    The increasing number of cars on our roads and the corresponding room that they are using has led a team of experts to promote the use of smaller vehicles in our city centres.

    Germany is largely considered as the most prolific country when it comes to car production, and one model has continually flourished. The VW Golf. Habitually at the top of popularity and sales rankings, the Golf has matched industry. One side-effect of this, however, is the size of the car. When the Golf was launched in 1974, it measured 1.61 metres wide. At 1.79 metres, the width of the 2022 model is the width of the largest Mercedes-Benz of the 1970s.

    New versions of nearly every car model follows suit with the Golf, and this causes a problem for urban spacing, as our streets don’t mimic the trend. Konrad Otto-Zimmermann, former Secretary General of the International Association of Cities for Sustainable Development, ICLEI, has joined forces with a team of experts from urban and town planning. Together, they have developed “fine mobility” concept at the University of Kassel, recognising the need for, “disarmament in traffic from coarse to finer vehicles.”

    The Research Association for Roads and Transport (FGSV) is retabulating car design and the corresponding parking space capacity that has become duly effected. Otto-Zimmermann was queried on this study: “In terms of craftsmanship, the FGSV’s approach is certainly clean. But the philosophy behind it, in my opinion, is wrong. The research company uses the vehicle stock to determine the dimensions of the average vehicle, which is not exceeded by 85 percent of all vehicles. Because the vehicles are getting bigger and bigger, the FGSV uncritically adopts this status and cements the car bloat for decades to come, instead of thinking normatively and providing incentives to save space. We should not let the market dictate the size of our parking spaces.”

    Commenting on how municipalities can implement countermeasures, Otto Zimmerman said: “Urban space is the most important factor for municipalities. They should be able to decide how much space to give to which types of vehicles. Do they allow a few huge cars to be parked in a section of road, or is it not more appropriate to have more small vehicles parked there instead? So far, the municipalities have lacked the tools to do so. Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel, the VCD and the SRL, we have developed the concept of “fine mobility”. This gives them a new vehicle classification according to size and weight. We used a unit of measurement that everyone knows: product size. We distinguish between seven G-Classes from XXS, XS and S to M to L, XL and XXL.”

    When questioned on the vehicle types used in his fine mobility concept, Otto-Zimmermann further commented, “We looked at the entire world of wheels, from roller skates to bicycles and light electric vehicles to off-road vehicles. Around 100 vehicles were systematically recorded. This also shows off all the vehicles above the bicycle and below the car with a meaningful category and a traffic area. The FGSV recognises only one design vehicle: passenger cars and design vehicles, bicycles and motorcycles.”

  4. Parking space solutions for Amersfoort’s shared bicycle and scooter scheme

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    Source: Fietsberaad Crow

    Sixteen designated parking spaces have been set aside in the centre of Amersfoort in a quest to resolve the annoyance of irresponsibly parked electric scooters, shared by the city community. Similarly built hubs are also due for development in nearby local areas.

    Residents have begun to protest against the often-abandoned vehicles, which have become hazardous for dwellers. A recent evaluation of the shared mobility scheme found that between January and August of 2022, bad parking accounted for over half of complaints. It’s believed that introducing designated parking areas will not only make the area safer, but will also make it easier to find one of the shared vehicles.

    300 shared bicycles and 300 shared scooters are currently available for use by Amersfoort’s 150,000 inhabitants, although these numbers have reduced from 12,000 in mid-2022, due to two of five providers withdrawing from the sustainable transport scheme. However, the evaluation report concluded that half of the users have left their car at home in favour of the scooters, with the largest demographic under the age of 29. The main motives for the popularity were saving time, not needing to own a scooter or bike, and to have fun. From the reports, scooters have proved more favourable than the shared bicycles.

    The evaluation was based upon Amersfoort residents’ survey answers, data from the providers, reports to local government and results from a survey of MBO students.

  5. Groningen shares the secrets to smooth and sustainable city logistics

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    Source: Mobility Innovation Marketplace, L. Steinberg

    The city of Groningen, the Netherlands, is lauded as an innovator when considering sustainable urban logistics. Following an informative keynote by Lior Steinberg, we now share some of the city’s successes.

    Have you ever considered exactly what goes on out of sight in our cities, that enables us to enjoy the comfort and luxuries of everyday life that we have all become accustomed to? At the touch of a button, we can have orders delivered straight to our door. This delivery system or, urban logistics, is a complex but very productive network and we all love it. But sometimes it doesn’t function perfectly, and this can affect all of us.

    Factors to consider when contemplating urban logistics include traffic congestion and pollution. Some cities have been proactive and addressed such issues – one example being Groningen in The Netherlands. In a quest to improve standards of living, Groningen has been making improvements for decades and is keen to share its strategy for a sustainable city.

    Timing. Perhaps the most logical of all improvements, Groningen has capped the delivery times for cargo and delivery vehicles in specific areas of the city. Deliveries are now only possible between 5am and 12pm unless via a dedicated permit. Rush hour congestion is aided and thus, pollution levels drop, as do the often-forgotten noise pollution levels. Concise planning is required by those using delivery services – particularly businesses – and a faster-flowing network functions well. The strategy has been in place in certain areas for a number of years, but as of 2023, it applies to the entire city, one that is dedicated to improved social activities for those who visit.

    Polluting vehicles. Some might regard this as an obvious strategy, but Groningen has gone that little bit further than most. From 2025, only electric or hydrogen-powered vehicles and those under human power will be allowed in the city.

    Hubs and last-mile implementation. Groningen has constructed several last-mile hubs around the city. Multiple goods are transferred to these hubs by transport services, at which point electric cargo bikes and sustainable methods take over the handling of deliveries to their final destination.

    Cargo Bikes. The relationship which the Netherlands has with bicycles is globally recognised, particularly in Europe. As a nation of devotees of this mode of transport in everyday life, cargo bikes with their sustainable and practical approach have been championed in the country. Now with constantly-developing electric drive systems, deliveries of many sizes will be made faster and more economically distributed.

    Knowledge and collaboration. Keen to expand its founded success, and in a quest to improve our way of life, Groningen has shared its strategies with other European cities. Their approaches have been widely published and projects including Intereg’s Smart Urban Freight Logistics Hubs and Horizon’s Urban Logistics as an On-demand Service have been included in Groningen’s agendas. Let’s hope other cities take advantage of this knowledge.

  6. POLIS and ALICE launch joint guide for a zero-emission 2030

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    The strategic plan aims to lead transformation in cities so that urban logistics proactively respond to the pollution, congestion, safety, and environmental challenges to create liveable, prosperous, resilient, and safer cities.

    ALICE (Alliance for Logistics Innovation through Collaboration in Europe) and POLIS (Cities and regions for transport innovation) launched their ‘guide for advancing towards zero-emission urban logistics by 2030’ on 1 December.

    The document addresses five key areas of intervention in modern cities:

    • Smart governance and regulations. Clear targets and plans, with knowledge shared between cities and regions.
    • Clean and alternative fleet. Uptake of small electric vehicles alongside current van and truck usage.
    • Logistics operations. Consolidation of flows, enabled by new models of collaboration such as sharing of vehicles and infrastructure.
    • Purpose-oriented data acquisition and sharing. Increased interaction between companies and local authorities.
    • Consumer engagement. More transparency to empower customers to enact change.

    The full report and press release can be found here.

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