The integration of automation in urban mobility can be considered as one of the biggest game-changers in urban mobility today. When used as shared vehicles that are integrated into an effective public transport network, automated vehicles can be a key solution to create healthier and more competitive and sustainable cities. They can drastically reduce car ownership and regain essential urban space, resulting in better mobility for all.
Across Europe and globally, many actions are ongoing to advance in this field: At an institutional level, with the set-up of a European Partnership and at an industrial level, where many investments are done in this domain.
However, similar to every disruptive change, there remain reservations and questions. Various automated driving-related roadmaps agree that electrified and automated mobility in cities is one of the most challenging milestones to be achieved.
Because there are questions… Do we have the right technologies? Do we have business cases? What is the citizens’ perspective? Is there the right culture for it?
At UITP, providing answers on the sustainable deployment of AVs in the urban mobility landscape has been on top of our agenda for a long time. Our more than 1,800 member companies from across the globe; from industries to operators, and from authorities to academia, wish to understand innovation. They want to have unbiased and transparent means to assess the impact of AVs – or any disruptive change – on their business or field, whether this is from a financial, social or technological aspect.
Research & innovation are key to be able to maximise the benefits of automation for our society. Alongside its own initiative SPACE (Shared Personalised Automated vEhicles), UITP is currently involved in various EU-projects on automation, such as ARCADE and Drive2TheFuture. Earlier this year we had the honour of kicking off SHOW(SHared automation Operating models for Worldwide adoption) as Coordinator – the 69-partner strong project that is the largest and most holistic ever initiative piloting automated vehicles in urban environments.
Initiatives such as the ARCADECAD Knowledge Base are vital when seeking to tackle the challenges that our sector faces when it comes to automation. Being a one-stop-shop for knowledge, experience and data on Cooperative, Connected and Automated Mobility (CCAM), the CAD Knowledge Basegathers input from the entire sector, ensuring we work together to reach the full potential automation has to offer.
Because while different interests might be at stake, creating a common vision for CAD is the only way we ensure the development of automation solutions that are safe, sustainable, and inclusive.
Developing the right technologies is essential. But maybe what’s even more important is what we do with them, and how we work together to create better mobility for all.