http://www.digitaljournal.com/business/modern-economies-need-an-integrated-transport-structure/article/506488

Modern economies need an integrated transport structure

Posted Nov 1, 2017 by Tim Sandle
Integrated transport needs to happen in each major city in order to match the demands of modern businesses, according to a new report. This not only benefits consumers, it can lead to lower operating costs and a reduction in pollution.
Many buses are now part of integrated and connected transport services.
Many buses are now part of integrated and connected transport services.
The vision for a modern, integrated transport system has been laid out in a recent report by the Transport Systems Catapult (U.K.’s technology and innovation center for intelligent mobility) and the Open Data Institute, supported by Deloitte. The report, which calls for an interventionist political strategy, is titled “The case for government involvement to incentivize data sharing in the U.K. intelligent mobility sector.”
This all fits with the concept of ‘mobility-as-a-service.’ This describes a new approach to transport that aims to meet the needs of mobility through services. This is enabled by combining transportation services from public and private transportation providers through an integrated service and payment system.
A key finding from the report is with evidence that shows “investment in data could lead to faster journeys, lower emissions, improved regional connections and opportunities for job creation in an emerging technology sector—without the need for massive infrastructure building projects.”
The report focuses on the U.K., but the findings are applicable to any developed economy. Major findings and recommendations from the report are:
New technologies aid integrated transport: Technologies such as driverless cars, journey planning apps and smart ticketing are opportunities which can be utilized with a strong data regime.
Digital culture: Governments need to work closely with industry to develop a data culture by providing a framework for secure access to data and guidelines for opening and sharing data.
Mobility Data Hubs to help the public and private sector work together.
An Altamont Commuter Express train.
An Altamont Commuter Express train.
Jay Slupesky/Wikimedia Commons
The most important conclusion is that investment in data should result in faster journeys, lower carbon emissions, improved regional connections as well as opportunities for job creation.
There are factors, however, that are hampering the collection and review of data in order to improve transport systems. These are listed out in the report and they have been summarized by the website Intelligent Transport. The prohibitive factors are: concerns about cyber security; a lack of data literacy skills; and a legacy culture that continues to see transport modes, like as rail and roads, in isolation. Each of these is causing the restricting the free flow of information.
Outlining this in an interview with the website Freight In The City, Transport Systems Catapult chief strategy officer Andrew Everett explains: “Overcrowding on our rail network, congestion on our roads and the ongoing struggle with pollution and climate change can all be addressed by intelligent solutions, which make use of the opportunities afforded to us by new technologies.”
He adds: “However, data is the key that unlocks the door to these innovations.”
This article is part of a four-part review of digital innovations in transport. The second article looks at future planning for railways, using Britain as a model “Integrated transport solutions are needed for UK railways.” The third article looks at how big data analytics can help to make railways run better: “Siemens, data analytics and train efficiency.” The fourth article looks at how apps are driving mobility-as-a-service: “New integrated transport app tested.”