Innovative Mobility Management Solutions
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Many toolkits and handbooks agree: in Mobility Management (MM), as in any other field, it is unnecessary to reinvent the wheel. Many lessons can be learnt from experiences of other transport professionals throughout Europe. One of the most important goals of EPOMM is to foster this exchange of knowledge and experience. Every once in a while, however, we encounter practices which have not been tried out before, or which are not yet wide-spread in Europe. These innovative MM concepts are the focus of this e-update. Of course, innovation should not be sought for the sake of innovation's sake. Each city or project team should look for the solution that best suits its local situation, whether it has been applied many times before, or is a ground-breaking experiment.



Getting companies on board

In the 1980s, the idea emerged in North America to form local travel plan networks as a way to join forces to manage commuter car use in a certain area. The concept did not find many applications in Europe as of yet, and research results on the effectiveness of local travel plan networks remain scarce. That is why the TRAVEL PLAN PLUS project will implement travel plan networks in four different corners of Europe and evaluate their impact. The potential advantages are clear: by combining forces and resources, more can be achieved and the scope of measures can be widened. In practice, these networks can take many forms, depending on the level of partners' involvement, the degree of formality of the organisational structure, the availability of resources and funding and the range of topics discussed (transport only or wider focus). More detailed information about the possible formats can be found in the TRAVEL PLAN PLUS literature review and it is also planned to have a workshop on local area travel plans at the next ECOMM.

The recently finalised COMMERCE project has already successfully established what they call Travel Plan Forums in their partner cities. These Forums acted as a driving force for local travel plan delivery and managed to mobilise many important stakeholders. Even after the project ended, useful resources continue to be exchanged through the COMMERCE group on the Allinx network site. The successful Golden Mile Transport Group in London, supported by COMMERCE, can serve as an inspiring example of a local travel plan network. Through prestigious events, such as the Golden Mile Celebration Evening, the network continues to attract new businesses. Read all about the COMMERCE results in the final COMMERCE newsletter, COMMERCE final report and check out the Standards on Workplace Travel Plans.

One way to manage car traffic to the office is to stimulate teleworking. To create favourable conditions for teleworking, the Smartwork network in the Netherlands started to let out flexible workplaces. With the slogan “Work is something you do. Not somewhere you go to...”, the Smartwork network in the Netherlands contains almost 100 workplaces where any employee can reserve a work spot, a meeting room or a teleconference link. The idea behind it is that employees can find a workplace within cycling distance of their homes or the place where they happen to be that day, thus limiting travel to the office.

A lot of initiatives have already been taken to create combined tickets or smart PT cards like the London Oyster Card. The Dutch providers MobilityMixx and Wantogo take this idea a large step further. With their Mobility Card, employees can hire a wide range of services: call for travel advice, pay for a train or bus trip, reserve a taxi, hire a parking spot near a railway station, hire a pool car, arrange for a teleconference meeting… The bill is sent directly to their employer. The fact that travel costs no longer need to be declared – with the risk of losing one’s receipts – saves a lot of time and money for both employees and employers.



Travel smart from the start


Parents with small children strongly prefer the car as their main means of transport. Furthermore, when a baby book, picture or toy is about mobility, it is almost always depicting a car or a truck. Starting from a very early age, children hence become conditioned in favour of motorised vehicles. The European project BAMBINI aims to alter this type of socialisation. To this end, BAMBINI is developing innovative and inspiring toys and books about sustainable transport modes for children aged 0 to 6. These toys and books will be distributed to and tested in crèches, kindergartens and pre-schools in 11 different countries. At the same time, also the parents will be made aware of the importance of travel socialisation. This is done by organising BAMBINI workshops for staff of pre-birth classes, day care centres and kindergarten, to incite them to inform and stimulate parents to use sustainable transport modes more often. Professionals of day care centres and kindergartens are also called on to develop more activities around sustainable mobility modes in their daily practice. With the help of all those professionals and beautifully designed toys and books, more and more children will travel smart from the start!



Smart travel for all

"When moving on a bus, think of Tarzan, who moves from one liana to another and never lets one liana go before he holds onto the next one". That is one of the tips that Angelika Gasteiner from Stadtbus Salzburg gives as she teaches older people to ride the bus. She shared these tips on a NICHES+ site visit. The European project NICHES+ aims to move innovative transport measures from their current "niche" position into mainstream urban transport practice. In the field of MM, they have identified three innovative concepts concerning the accessibility of transport for people with reduced mobility (the elderly, the disabled, children, people with learning difficulties…):

The blind and partially sighted passengers have received special attention in Brighton & Hove, in the UK. The city council has installed over 20 "talking bus stops" in 2007. The passengers receive a key fob that emits a signal when they are near a talking bus stop. By pressing the fob the bus stop "talks" to them, giving them details of which services are due, and where they are going to.

The elderly are the main focus of the AENEAS project. AENEAS has collected many best practices to promote sustainable mobility among the elderly in a Study Tour Catalogue. One of the examples featured is the Cyclopousse, a bike taxi in de French town of Villeurbanne, which brings the residents of three retirement homes to the most popular destinations in town. Another one is the "PatenTicket" project in Cologne, Germany, where a "godparent" with a lot of PT experience introduces one of his friends or relatives to the use of PT.



Thinking across the modes

Public transport does not always offer a good connection to one's home or destination. Innovative concepts are being developed to combine the freedom of the bicycle for short distances with the comfort of public transport for long distances. The Belgian PT operator TEC for instance, has developed a season ticket which gives you access to the TEC buses and the use of a specially designed folding bike during one year. Watch the video here (French spoken, but with very clear images of the user friendliness of the system).



Sustainable deliveries

In the field of urban freight traffic, MM solutions are starting to be introduced. More and more cities have a distribution or consolidation centre just outside the city centre, from which the goods are bundled and delivered by sustainable modes such as the cargo bike. See for instance:

Courier companies are also discovering the advantages of sustainable modes, like this FedEx tricycle (video) in Paris. It allows FedEx to reach productivity per parcel 20 to 50% higher as compared to classic vehicles!

The STEER programme of the IEE is just negotiating the support of a new EU-project called CYCLELOGISTICS that will investigate and disseminate possibilities for human powered goods distribution - we will report on it in the near future.



Looking for innovation?

Are you looking for a new way to manage mobility in your local context? On the EPOMM website, many interesting case studies can be found from all over Europe. Contact information is provided so you can ask experienced people about the problems they encountered and how they solved these. Also check out these 10 tips for successful MM innovation from NL Agency at allinx.



Meanwhile, in the land of technicians...

As MM practices continue to evolve and spread, many technical innovations are being developed. These can provide significant support for MM measures, as they improve speed, comfort and attractiveness of sustainable transport modes. Check out these concepts:

  • The bike monorail (YouTube video) .
  • The on-demand superbus (YouTube video), capable of riding on both normal roads and separately built roads where it can reach a speed of 150 to 250 km/h (read more about it here).
  • The Chinese straddling bus (YouTube video), which moves over car traffic.
  • A new technological solution to open a shared car with your mobile phone (see press release).
  • A telematics device that measures how much and how safely you drive and immediately affects your insurance costs (see for instance this UK insurance system). Also see this article from the Victoria Transport Policy Institute about Pay-As-You-Drive Insurance.
  • The ThinBike (video), the ideal solution to park your bike in a narrow hallway.

Some municipalities however prefer to go back to long-forgotten solutions, such as the Belgian town of Oudergem. For some of its services, such as waste collection and maintaining walking paths, they have hired three... Brabant Drafter horses! (see this ELTIS news item)



AENEAS conference

Green Mobility for Active Ageing
Keeping older people active, healthy and socially engaged

AENEAS is a European project in the framework of the Intelligent Energy Europe (IEE) programme. Its acronym stands for "Attaining Energy-Efficient Mobility in an Ageing Society."

The final AENEAS conference will highlight the challenges of demographic change, illustrate how the proposed activities fit into advanced urban mobility policies, and demonstrate how other cities can apply the innovative measures developed and piloted by the five AENEAS cities.

Date: April 8, 09:00 - 15:30

Place: Brussels, Belgium

Participation at the conference is free, but registration is compulsory. TO REGISTRATION



Car-Sharing workshop in Bremen

The City of Bremen and the momo project (more options for energy efficient mobility through Car-Sharing) kindly invite you to their workshop on car-sharing on Wednesday 23 February in Bremen. The workshop will focus on the economic dimension of Car-Sharing - e.g. how Car-Sharing helps cities to save money, how Public Transport operators can attract new target groups, and how Car-Sharing operators can provide efficient service structures and thus attractive rates. The full-day workshop is free of charge - but registration is necessary as soon as possible (and before 17 February) as the number of participants is limited. For more information, contact Michael Frömming (

MOMO website.


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