NEWS - 2020/12/14

FUTUREMOB – Safe Transport and Commuting, a fast track to the Future of Mobility

FutureMob was proposed with the intention of generating changes in mobility habits through monthly programmes that reward users and companies that get involved in this initiative. The reward programmes, from now on called ‘challenges’, were based on 2 specific strategies each one. The first challenge, called ‘Be Healthy’, promoted the change of transport modes towards active ones such as cycling and walking. The second one, called‘Move Smart’, proposed the change of commuting schedules to avoiding peak hours as well as the adoption of telework, in order to avoid overcrowding public transport and public spaces.

Users of Debreçen and the AMB participate through the Ciclogreen application, which registers all the trips made in any mode of transport (walk, bike, e-bike, e-scooter, telework, car-sharing, bus, train, and metro). Besides the quantitative data of the trips’ registers, the consortium recognizes the importance that qualitative data has as a crucial source of information for strategic planning and citizen engagement topics. For this reason, in both cities a survey was carried through the Ciclogreen applications. The questionnaire, made up of 4 questions, collected information concerning perception of users in the post lock-down context.

To evaluate the change in mobility habits, the information from the journeys (20,134 records), has been merged with the qualitative data, both collected by Ciclogreen. CARNET carried out the analysis of the data collected in both cities, from September 15 to November 15, 2020.

Several interesting results were found. First, people’s commitment to the initiative grew exponentially between challenge 1 and challenge 2. In the AMB, the trips grew by 225% and in Debreçen 25%. These numbers demonstrate that this kind of initiatives based on incentives are a key element in encouraging changing mobility patterns and engaging new users to innovation projects.

In the AMB, during challenge 1, the increase in trips in active transport modes was observed, however, it cannot be determined that there has been a change from motorized modes to active modes since from the beginning and throughout both challenges, in the AMB, the predominant means of transport were active: walking and cycling. (see figure 1). During challenge 2, a redistribution of travel times was observed, especially on working days, however, as in challenge 1, it cannot be stated that these changes in travel times were to avoid peak hours.

Figure 1: Hourly modal distribution in a working day in the AMB. Challenge 1

In Debreçen the preferred modes of transport were cycling and walking during both challenges. However, since in challenge 1 a brief increment of bus commuting and also the inclusion of shared-car trips is observed, it cannot be stated that there has been a change towards sustainable modes. In challenge 2 there were no observed changes in travel schedules, nevertheless, it’s identified a significative reduction in the number of daily trips as well as the significant increase in teleworking from the start until the end of the challenge. (see figure 2) These results can be probably due to the mobility restrictions and the promotion of telework. (see figure 3)

Figure 2: Trips distribution on a working day

Figure3: Telework records on a working day

Debreçen. Challenge 2

The FutureMob project played an important role in encouraging citizens to use sustainable means of transport, as well as keeping social distancing in public spaces and public transport. The information obtained through the data collected is an important input to understand urban dynamics and mobility patterns, also allows to assess the impacts of strategies, policies and services.

FutureMob is funded by the EIT Urban Mobility in its COVID-19 Crisis Response Call for Proposals 2020. CARNET participates along with other partners that include the Barcelona Metropolitan Area (AMB), Debrecen Urban and Economic Development Centre, Ciclogreen, and three other members.