Solent transport, the West of England Combined Authority, and Derby and Nottingham councils will receive a share of the Government’s £90m Future Mobility Zones funding pot to trial new transport technologies.
Drone deliveries will be trialled by Solent Transport, which covers Portsmouth, Southampton, Isle of Wight and Hampshire councils (LTT 22 Nov 19). The drones will transport medical supplies between hospitals on the mainland and the Isle of Wight.
In all, Solent has been awarded £29m for a three-year programme that also includes smartphone apps for planning and paying for sustainable journeys demand; an e-bike share scheme; and other new approaches to freight distribution.
The West of England Combined Authority has received £24m for a £28m programme. The DfT said it includes a proposed trial of self-driving cars to transport people between Bristol Airport, central Bath and the Northern Arc, though this was missing from WECA’s press release. It said the programme would feature trials of e-scooters – which are not yet legal on UK roads – and new booking platforms, giving people access to book one journey across multiple modes of transport through the click of a button.
Derby and Nottingham have been awarded £16.7m. The councils will create electric mobility ‘hubs’ in neighbourhoods, campuses and depots, offering electric car club hire, electric bike sharing, vehicle charging points, digital information screens and real-time public transport information.
A data platform will pool various transport data sources owned and collected by the council into a single place to help traffic management.
The three areas join the West Midlands Combined Authority, which the Government chose to pioneer the Future Mobility Zone concept in October 2018.
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