One contribution to transport sustainability would be to make more efficient use of existing transport facilities and minimise the number of vehicle trips through the use of organisational, information and awareness tools. This is mobility management. It includes strategies such as better information on available public transport, arranging of new collective transport for commuters and students, the co-ordination of car-pooling and public awareness campaigns. The emphasis is on encouraging a voluntary change in behaviour, through the use of specific centres and co-ordinators at a regional, local or site level.
MOSAIC had three main objectives:
- to improve understanding of mobility management by clarifying key concepts, organisational roles and user needs;
- to demonstrate these concepts and evaluate their potential for wider implementation;
- to disseminate the findings and recommendations.
The project has produced a brochure, user manual and CD-ROM that define the different elements of mobility management. In particular, roles are identified for:
- a Mobility Manager, responsible for introducing initiatives within a particular area;
- a Mobility Consultant, responsible for providing mobility management services at an urban/regional level, and encouraging their adoption at site level (e.g. business park, major company, school);
- a Mobility Centre, offering information services to the public;
- a Mobility Co-ordinator and Mobility Office, promoting activities at a particular site according to an agreed Mobility Plan.
Demonstration projects were run in Germany, the UK and The Netherlands:
- the Wuppertal Mobility Centre achieved a small shift from private to public transport;
- the Mobility Consultant in Nottingham persuaded more than 20% of organisations with more than 200 employees to develop Green Commuter Plans;
- initiatives in Utrecht and Leiden achieved some modal shift and increased company involvement in mobility management.
The project concluded that Mobility Consultants appear to be most successful with the largest organisations (500+ employees), and such organisations should be targeted first. On sites employing over 1000 staff and where there are severe access or parking problems, it is suggested that little progress will be made unless a full-time Mobility Co-ordinator is employed (preferably in the Estates or Facilities Management functions at the site). The voluntary approach to encouraging Mobility Plans is favoured (rather than political mandate or pressure), in order to ensure a longer-term sustainable drive for implementation.
MOSAIC has concluded that mobility management is a long-term approach that requires long-term political support as well as bottom-up local initiatives. In itself, it will probably make a measurable but not really significant impact on the choice of transport modes. However, it also raises awareness of transport alternatives that may then be more strongly stimulated by other policy measures such as road pricing.
At the European level, MOSAIC recommended:
- the setting up of an umbrella organisation offering information on best practice in mobility management;
- support for demonstration initiatives in the freight transport sector.
At the national level, MOSAIC recommended:
- enactment of supporting legislation and fiscal policies;
- research into the national obstacles to implementation of mobility management;
- initiation of freight sector actions;
- promotion of mobility management at leisure and retail sites (to extend previous work-site experience).