Freight transport and city goods distribution are widely known factors of energy consumption and environmental degradation in European urban centers. Increasing efforts have been undertaken in EU countries to improve operations and reduce their negative impacts.
Based on the evidence gathered, there is a growing consensus that more sustainable urban freight operations and significant benefits in terms of energy efficiency can be achieved by an appropriate mix of different measures. Such measures could for instance be: Urban Consolidation Centres, optimised urban freight transport and delivery plans, clean vehicles and low emission technologies, restrictions and public incentive policies, last mile and value added services, integration of city logistics processes within the overall management of urban mobility.
The ENCLOSE Project aimed to provide and disseminate viable solutions for urban energy-efficient transport by:
- addressing the specific needs, requirements, options and priorities of European Small and Medium Historic Towns (SMHTs), demonstrating and assessing feasible and sustainable solutions and releasing a specific SULP (Sustainable Urban Logistics Plan);
- qualifying the demand of the European SMHTs for sustainable, energy-efficient urban logistics and freight distribution solutions, generating and spreading the knowledge about good practices and suitable strategies for effective integration logistics schemes in the overall urban mobility and, more generally, town governance policies (SUMP);
- investigating and assessing the operation of “green vehicles” (FEVs, PHEVs, Bio-gas) and fleets in urban distribution and other logistics schemes from the point of view of the needs and requirements of in SMHTs.
The ENCLOSE Project was organised into seven work packages:
- WP1-Project Management and coordination
- WP2 - Situation, Needs and Challenges focussed on gathering the background knowledge and building up the initial conditions for project demonstration, evaluation and knowledge sharing activities.
- WP3 - Piloting, Assessment, Transferability and SULP development cover the core activities of the participating sites and stakeholders.
- WP4- Implementation of Good Practice Analysis, Knowledge Sharing and Exchange of Experiences actions throughout the entire project life, in parallel to piloting and transferability analysis activities.
- WP5 - Evaluation and Policy Tools abstracted local, site-level experiences, results and Sustainable Urban Logistics Plans into policy recommendations and tools usable at the European level, addressing the specific segment of small-/mid-size historic towns.
- WP6 - Communication and Promotion covered all communication and dissemination activities needed to ensure the highest visibility of ENCLOSE project.
- WP7 - Communication and Promotion coversed specific contribution, upon request by the EACI, to common dissemination activities to increase synergies between, and the visibility of IEE-supported actions.
Rating complex actions, by mathematical methods, is a difficult process and typically one that has a high degree of inaccuracy and leaves it open for debate.
The methodology chosen for this crossevaluation does have limitations, depends on the quality of the data supplied. The cities do have different contexts, different sizes of study areas, different policy environments and acceptancy amongst the different cohorts. But just a few of the many complex issues involved in logistics and freight. Consequently no comparisons between cities was been made.
A measure type that has been rated low still can have a successful implementation, depending on circumstances that does not appear in a limited survey. On the contrary there is no guarantee that a measure type that is highly rated can be easily implemented. There is also massive overlapping and dependency on different measures types for other measures. In general Education/ARC and consolidation type of measures are getting the best rating, i.e. having best chance of successful implementation. These two measure types have some opposite qualities. Education/ARS in general is directed towards citizens and does not demand investment, while consolidation measures addresses professionals and often, when a UCC does not exist, implies heavy investments.