Welcome to the April issue of the bi-monthly TRIMIS Digest, which this month focuses on urban logistics. The Digest features a selection of short articles on this topic and TRIMIS Insights, a new feature, which provides a snapshot of European funded transport research trends.
The challenges of urban freight transport policies
Urban freight transport (UFT) provides benefits and challenges for European cities. A study examined UFT policy choices in 11 local authorities across Sweden, England and Scotland. It highlights the lack of a strategic policy approach, and human and financial resources for urban freight; and makes recommendations for further improvement.
Are electric-assisted cargo bicycles the solution for urban freight?
A study compared the delivery route cost trade-offs between box delivery trucks and electric-assisted (EA) cargo bikes that have the same route. It concludes that the delivery trucks are more cost-effective for greater distances from distribution centres and for large volume deliveries to one destination. However, EA cargo bikes may be well suited for congested cities with designated bike paths and truck parking challenges.
A study assessed the environmental and economic impacts of a ‘crowdshipping’ platform in urban areas. This is where customers use the public transport system to pick up or drop off goods in automated parcel lockers. The study found that the adoption of such an approach has potential environmental benefits, but requires policymakers to provide greater incentives. It outlines a number of recommendations for further research.
Electric vehicles (EVs) are now being considered for urban freight transport. A study evaluated the impact of policies that promote the adoption of electric freight vehicles. It found that purchase subsidies and exemptions from low emission/congestion zone fees and vehicle tax can increase the sale of EVs. It concludes by making recommendations for further research to provide greater understanding of EV freight policies.
A total of 60 projects were identified under the 7th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7) and Horizon 2020 (H2020) that focused on freight transport in an urban context. Almost €244 million has been granted to conduct research in this field.
The contents and views included in the TRIMIS Digest do not necessarily reflect the position of the European Commission. Please note that each article is a summary of only one study. Other studies on the same topic may come to other conclusions.