Government launches mobility consultations for future transport

Government launches mobility consultations for future transport

Posted by

Kevin Blackmore

August 2018

The Government has launched two consultations into future mobility patterns in our cities that may see the greater use of electric vans, micro-bikes and e-cargo bikes to reduce congestion and pollution.

The ‘Last Mile’ consultation calls for evidence to improve the Government’s understanding of the scale of the opportunity, as well as some of the current barriers to delivering goods more sustainably and with less impact on the environment.

It will explore how EVs can provide better service to customers for making deliveries in cities compared to light commercial vehicles, looking at the potential environmental and other benefits and assessing the barriers to having a more sustainable ‘last mile’ delivery.

It will also examine what incentives might be appropriate to encourage a large-scale shift to clean, last-mile delivery options and measures to improve logistical efficiency; for example, having urban hubs from which goods can be delivered with minimal environmental impact.

The other consultation: ‘The Future of Mobility’ calls for evidence in a number of key areas, including the background against which changes to transport are occurring; an assessment of the emerging trends that will shape urban mobility in the next couple of decades; and consideration of the approach Government should take to help cities harness the opportunities and address any challenges presented by these trends.

The call for evidence, says the Government, is the start of its ‘Future of Mobility Grand Challenge’ which aims to make the UK world leaders in the movement of goods, services and people.

As part of this, the Government has confirmed £12m of funding in six projects looking at the development of connected and autonomous vehicles.  The funding is essential for developing, testing and proving the safety of the vehicles, the Government said.

Transport minister Jesse Norman said: “The UK has a long and proud history of leading the world in transport innovation and our Future of Mobility Grand Challenge is designed to ensure this continues.

“We are on the cusp of an exciting and profound change in how people, goods and services move around the country which is set to be driven by extraordinary innovation. This could bring significant benefits to people right across the country and presents enormous economic opportunities for the UK, with autonomous vehicles sales set to be worth up to £52 billion by 2035.

“Our Last Mile call for evidence and Future of Mobility call for evidence mark just one stage in our push to make the most of these inviting opportunities.”

The Government has appointed Ian Robertson, BMW UK chief executive, as ‘Business Champion’ to help advise, shape and develop the Future of Mobility Grand Challenge. He will be supported by an advisory council made up of Isobel Dedring, Tracy Westall and Stan Boland.

Robertson said: “A transport revolution in the way people and goods move around will see more changes in the next 10 years than the previous hundred.

“As the Future of Mobility Grand Challenge Business Champion, I’m looking forward to working with the government to help the UK build on its existing strengths and capitalise on that opportunity.”

The Government is set to publish a full report into the Future of Urban Mobility Strategy by the end of the year.

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