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Ecommerce enabled Demand Responsive Urban Logistic

European Union
Complete with results
Geo-spatial type
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Network and traffic management systems (NTM)
Smart mobility and services (SMO)
Transport mode
Road icon
Transport policies
Transport sectors
Freight transport


Background & Policy context

In the last ten years major efforts have been carried out by the European cities in order to face traffic flow congestion and the related energy consumption and noise levels in urban areas.

In particular, limitations to traffic circulation and access restrictions (Restricted Traffic Zone - RTZ) to city centres have become common practice based on specific transport schemes (Park & Ride, public transport accessibility, traffic light co-ordination, etc..), innovative transit vehicles and fuels (friendly and safety characteristics, CNG, LPG, hybrid, electrical,.) and technological infrastructures (access gates, variable message signs, traffic lights,). No equal efforts and attention have been paid to the urban goods distribution process which is, together with private traffic flows, one of the major sources of energy consumption, noxious gas emissions and noise levels in urban areas, resulting in the well known negative impacts on life and environmental quality of our cities.

The main reason for this lack of efforts is that facing the urban logistic process implies acting on different, inter-related city management aspects: institutional, city regulatory and mobility policies; political, social and citizens consensus; city operational and business processes; infrastructural/technological service organisation.

The solution of the above issues are the basic conditions to create a coordinated development and management of the operational processes of the city logistic arena in the context of a current, partnership-driven approach, for designing and realizing an advanced freight distribution platforms and for demonstrating and evaluating new urban logistic IST systems and schemes integrated with e-Commerce services.

The development of telematics technologies within the last decade has had a primary role in contributing to the development of logistic platforms. Today the technological supply in this sector includes several technologies, methodologies, and tools.

Many of the recent and current progresses in this sector are due to several RTD projects on ICTs carried out in Europe within the last 10-15 years (Cost 321, SURFF, IDIOMA, FREIA, ARTEMIS, MOSCA,.). Such projects have often covered the introductory phases and the exploration of organizational and technological solutions for the development of logistic platforms, ensuring a partial coverage of the industrial risks through public fundings. In this area there are also two active Euro


The overall objective of eDRUL is to investigate, develop and validate an innovative IST platform and schemes for improved management of freights distribution and logistic processes in urban area. Strongly based on and integrated with e-Commerce/e-Business architectures and concepts, the developed solutions will enable:

  • communication and team working of the various actors involved in the freight distribution process, through a suitable set of networked e-Business services (B2B segment);
  • improved interaction among the end-users of the goods distribution system and the logistics and retail system, through a number of e-Commerce services (B2C segment);
  • optimal use and management of the available resources of the logistics system (fleets and available capacity, logistics platforms, goods collection and unload areas, routes,.) in a way to realise flexible, demand-driven goods distribution schemes integrated in the ITS urban scenario.

Overall, eDRUL is to address different city distribution scenarios and service models, including:

  • city distribution services in limited traffic areas under various access restriction measures;
  • consumer-driven goods delivery services through the use of dedicated infrastructures such as pick-up points or take-away stations;
  • optimisation of deliveries and reduction on city impacts through cooperation of networked transport service providers;
  • door-to-door delivery services to special user categories such elderly and disabled consumers.

These issues have different relevance in the different eDRUL sites, and will be subject of evaluation through local demonstrations and show cases.


eDRUL innovative e-logistics solutions will be tested and validated in 3 different European sites in Italy (Siena), The Netherlands (Kenniswijk) and Portugal (Lisbon).

The project approach includes the following main elements:

  • analysis of the e-logistics needs of urban areas (regulatory aspects, IST infrastructures and e-Commerce/e-Business services) and of different user categories within the urban logistics chain (end-users, Authorities, fleet operators,.);
  • identification of main objectives for the target IST architecture (economics, mobility, environment,.) and definition of the main system requirements;
  • functional specifications, design and development of the general eDRUL platform, (logical scheme, main components and information interactions, e-Business and e-Commerce integrated services and interactions with the ITS infrastructures);
  • demonstration, testing and validation of eDRUL solutions at different levels in 3 urban sites, with different area characteristics and well-defined mobility policies and transport infrastructures;
  • comparative evaluation of site results, by a common framework and evaluation methodology, as regards mobility, transportation and sustainability impacts;
  • assessment of the business case for demand responsive, e-logistics freight distribution systems, and the conditions under which these may be implemented successfully in European urban areas;
  • dissemination of eDRUL achievements through a User Group/Logistics Forum, promotion with the Authorities and market stimulation for innovative e-logistics schemes and IST solutions.


Parent Programmes
Institution Type
Public institution
Institution Name
European Comission, DG Information Society
Type of funding
Public (EU)


The project achievements include:

  • the design and development of a novel IST architecture and platform, including planning and management tools, to allow flexible and intelligent management of logistics processes in a multi-fleet, multi-operator context and the overall coordination of freight distribution processes (Urban Logistics Coordination Agency);
  • the implementation of a B2B service infrastructure, enabling the inter-networking and collaboration of the different actors of the logistics chain;
  • the implementation of a B2C service infrastructure, enabling interaction between the customers and the goods retail/distribution system;
  • the integration of the urban logistics system with other ITS urban mobility management services (traffic information, parking management, access control) in a view of co-ordinated management of urban mobility and overall sustainability of urban processes;
  • testing and validating of the developed generic solutions at different levels in three urban sites, in Italy, The Netherlands and Portugal. These sites were clearly representative of the diversity of urban configurations and contexts existing in Europe, being thus representative of implicit clusterizations of European urban areas that was meant to include in this project;
  • a comparative assessment of the different impacts of new technologies and services by a means of common evaluation methodology. This allows evaluating the suitability of the various IST elements and components, assessing their transferability and investigating the business case and market potential of the developed technologies and devices;
  • the promotion of the developed solutions, both the IST architecture and tools and the organisational/operational models, through dissemination via a Logistics User Forum of operators, city and different actors of the logistics chain.


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


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