Replacing private car traffic with shared mobility services in urban areas can dramatically cut the number of cars needed, reduce CO2 emissions and free public land for uses other than parking.
This was the key finding of a report from the International Transport Forum at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
The report, which was presented at Smarter Travel LIVE! last week, examines how on-demand shared transport modes could change the face of mobility in Helsinki, Finland. Analysis based on simulation measured the impact of shared mobility solutions on accessibility, metro/rail ridership, required parking space, congestion and CO2 emissions.
Speaking at Smarter Travel LIVE!, the ITF’s Philippe Crist outlined how previous simulations using mobility data from Lisbon, Portugal have shown very similar results to the Helsinki project.
The simulations showed how motorised road trips (private car, bus and taxi) were replaced by shared taxis to provide on-demand door-to-door service or street corner-to-street corner service, booked 30 minutes in advance, said Crist.
With these shared services, he said, all of today’s car journeys in Helsinki Metropolitan Area could be provided with just 4% of the current number of private vehicles. The best results in terms of reducing emissions and congestion are achieved when all private car trips are replaced with shared rides:
• CO2 emissions from cars would fall 34%;
• Congestion would be reduced by 37%;
• Much of public parking space could be used for other purposes.
Shared mobility also means fewer transfers, less waiting and shorter travel times compared with traditional public transport, said Crist. The improved quality of the service could attract car users who currently do not use public transport and foster a shift away from individual car travel.
The Helsinki study confirms that shared mobility services can be highly effective feeder services for high-capacity public transport services. As in the Lisbon case, scenarios providing first- and last-mile shared services showed that this could increase rail and metro ridership between 15% and 23%.
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