At Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley in Santa Clara, California, one of the highlighted themes at this year’s conference was modern mobility and how city leaders can help “develop a roadmap for smart transportation.” Let’s look closer into this concept and examine some of the solutions already underway across Europe.-Bruno De Man
Solving mobility struggles
According to a recent report, the global smart transportation market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 25.11% from 2018-2026. Last year, Europe had the largest market share thanks to the increasing amount of smart transportation automotive and technology companies. Here are three of the latest trends emerging in cities of all sizes across the continent.
- 1. Dynamic traffic management plans: With the help of the World Business Council For Sustainable Development (WBCSD) (whose network includes 200 companies from BP to French electric company EDF), cities such as Hamburg and Lisbon are drafting dynamic traffic management plans that integrate cycling and public transport into the city’s infrastructure. Solutions as simple as smart parking and off-peak delivery systems are already helping Hamburg streamline its traffic solutions, as well as add green arteries to its infrastructure.
- 2. Sustainable public transport: As greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution continue to rise, many municipal councils are turning to zero-emission projects, looking to reduce carbon footprints with sustainable options like “green” public transport. One great example is taking place in Birmingham, England where the city is developing a HS2 high-speed rail project in partnership with companies like Toshiba, UPS, Engie and Schneider Electric. Not only will the project reduce travel time to London from 1 hour and 21 minutes to 49 minutes, it could also reduce the number of trucks and cars on congested routes, transferring 4.5 million voyages a year from the air and 9 million from the road, according to BBC.
- 3. Smart (and autonomous) cars: Capitals like Valletta are introducing e-vehicles as a way to reduce carbon emissions, but some cities like Paris are going a step beyond that, turning to driverless taxis as a way to ease up city centre congestion.
By looking at modern mobility solutions, cities can transport both citizens and goods from point A to B in a manner that is cost-effective and efficient, while saving the environment at the same time.