Logistics, Transportation and the Future of City Mobility

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In the 21st century, the movement of people and goods in cities needs a smart approach due to the quick rise of the urban population. According to statistics, it is estimated by 2050; the city population worldwide will have an additional of over 2 billion people.

Today, many cities are experiencing congestion and immobility issues due to population increase; and a lack of proper decongestion mechanism. Right now, 55% of the world population lives in urban areas and is projected to increase by 68% come 2050. This data shows the seriousness in which cities are dealing with in running of the business. Richard Alden shared similar sentiments about the need to reform the current policies to enhance proper city arrangement.

Logistics Implications and Smart Mobility in Cities

Lifestyle change is one of the contributing factors to city movement challenges of people and goods. For instance, eCommerce is driving growth in both domestic and international markets. The traditional way of buying goods is slowly getting phased out as people rely more on online shopping.  In the UK, eCommerce and online shopping accounted for over 18 percent of all retail spending, which is more than in the past years.

Today, customers want to spend more and buy customized goods and preferably receive their orders on the same day to suit their flexible lifestyles. The overall cost of parcel delivery, according to McKinsey without considering line-haul, pickup, and sorting, amounts to 70 billion Euros. For the United States, Germany, and China accounts for more than 40% of the market. It brings implications for logistics, which is required to fulfill the needs of the consumers.

Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)

The transport of goods from one place to another requires a smart approach to decongest the cities and efficiently make delivery on time without interfering with the normal running of other businesses. The vision to have a ground delivery bot ecosystem is likely to include a combination of the latest Information and Communication Technology (ICT) together with Electric Vehicles (EVs) to maximize routing efficiencies and minimize emission, congestion, and unused space.

Have the picture of products being loaded onto LCVs (Light Commercial Vehicles) fleet, constantly touring between cities. It will then get passed onto other vehicles responsible for sorting and delivery to specified areas within the city by the use of the algorithm to adjust routes in real-time to maximize good organization.

What is needed in the future?

In the future, more mobility is needed but must be done more smartly. When it comes to intelligent transportation, systems rely on an integrated approach between technology, legal work, and the infrastructure. Currently, the ICT used by last-mile delivery companies is not as effective as it is designed to increase the efficiency of their routes.

However, what will be needed in future is the development of an ICT infrastructure that captures centrally, flows of all goods to plan the most efficient routing. Having smart mobility should be the ultimate goal. A combination of connectivity, electrification, and automation to achieve six zeros:

  • Zero emissions
  • Zero congestion
  • Zero energy
  • Zero cost
  • Zero accidents
  • Zero empty (all space is utilized)

With cities using technology for smart mobility, it will be the best playground to help gets rid of the current menace, rendering cities helpless.

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