According to the United Nations, by 2050 the world urban population is expected to nearly double making urban mobility a key challenge for cities’ sustainability. The more activities are concentrated in a given urban context, the more congestion, traffic safety and environmental pollution it will bring. Hence, mobility has numerous negative consequences on people’s health as well as on local GDP. Cities face worldwide issues such as global warming, energy dependency and increased energy costs. This global context urges urban authorities across Europe to tackle common challenges ranging from public transport inadequacy to air quality and urban planning. EU Urban Authorities have been working for many years with local, national and European initiatives (such as Civitas or Europe on the Move, 2017) on these issues by establishing Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMPs), which embeds a long-term common vision for cities’ mobility strategies. To address the effects of the climate crisis, and given that conventional solutions have already reached their potential, cities have been transformed into living laboratories for the design, development and testing of solutions. The 2nd UIA call for proposals called cities on to tackle these issues in order to achieve a smarter, greener and more integrated urban transport of people and goods, suggesting to experiment:
- Efficient infrastructure and mobility. From soft solutions of ride-hailing or car-pooling apps, to hard infrastructure interventions of self-charging vehicles, cycling lanes or logistic hubs, the central focus of the call is to improve the efficiency of urban mobility.
- Integrated urban transport of people and goods. The second set of suggested activities focused on the comprehensive way of addressing mobility challenges by concentrating on a long-term strategy involving citizens, a multi-scale and multi-modal approach and replicable and measurable resource-efficiency solutions.