Whilst in core cities the use of the private automobile is already stagnating or declining, in rural areas the car remains in a dominating position. This is caused by a downward spiral of declining usage and service reductions in rural public transport. In the end, public transport is in many regions suitable only for children to get to school and for several groups of commuters. Also the business models of innovative intermodal solutions like one-way-car-sharing are based on high density of demand and are therefore offered only in urban areas. Thus, the insufficient coverage of rural areas by public and intermodal transport is getting more and more the critical factor for a more extensive modal shift towards more sustainable transportation. Another unsolved problem is the lack of mobility opportunities of those people without the possibility of car usage.
The aim of the project is the coverage of rural and/or suburban regions with multimodal services, which are more attractive for customers and economically more efficient than conventional public transport, accessed by foot, bike&ride or park&ride, and at the same time ecologically and socially more sustainable, than the sole use of motorised individual transport.
The key objective of the project is an offer of intermodal services for rural and suburban regions, which is attractive for choice riders and improves the mobility opportunities for so far disadvantaged people at the same time. Furthermore, it shall not negatively affect transportation safety, but be ecologically sustainable and economically feasible without significant increasing public spending in the transport sector. This should be achieved by an optimisation of public transport in terms of lower network density, but higher speed, more frequent services and better interconnections. At the same time, accessibility of the stations is to be ensured by a new type of vehicles for individual transport. The methods to be employed in the project are the drafting of individual vehicles and mobility Services (schedules of public transport and networks of vehicle rental stations). Furthermore, the usage of modes and networks are to be forecasted and costs and revenues will be calculated.
After the project, there should be the knowledge, whether the objectives can be reached by optimisation of public transport services in the meaning of better served backbone lines and ensuring accessibility with new solutions for the last mile. More detailed, also the influence of spatial and settlement structures and other framing conditions should be known.