Electric cars, autonomous driving, vehicle sharing, pay-as-you-go… Sounds familiar? It is more and more frequent to heard these words on a daily-basis, since people are starting to witness the advantages the new wave of transportation technologies is offering.
However, it is more or less the first time that a number is given regarding the potential savings cities might achieve with integrated mobility systems, when it come to “pollution, safety and other transportation-related costs” (GreenBiz, 2017). McKinsey&Consultants are the authors, and their analysis estimates that, in 50 metropolitan areas around the world, the amount is worth up to $600 billion.
We know every city is unique, and the number could change from one place to another. However, in my opinion, having an approximate is pretty inviting. Inviting people, administrations, policy-makers and companies around the world to make a change encouraged for the quantifiable benefits. Of course, I think there is the need for always having in mind that the confluence of the three sustainability pillars (economic development, society well-being and environment protection) is the most important thing!
McKinsey’s analysis was performed in different scenarios, for how mobility might change in three types of cities regarding density, sprawl, and economic development. Then, they laid out quantifiable and qualitative opportunities and challenges along with recommendations to urban and city stakeholders.
Finally, they also pointed out fast-moving trends shaping urban-mobility around the world. I totally agree with them and I believe the rest of urban passengers are too. My top are:
- Shared mobility: both ride-sharing and ride-hailing have grown rapidly over the past years, competing with public transit and private vehicle ownership.
- Autonomous driving: people are excited to know that autonomous vehicles “should turn driving time into free time” and will also help improving road-safety.
- Vehicle electrification: electric-vehicle sales are rising among alternative energy vehicles, helping reducing the amount of greenhouse gases emissions to the atmosphere, as well.
- Connectivity and Internet of Things: helping trip planning, connectivity, and to guide autonomous vehicles.
- Public transit: improvement of public-transit networks with more ecological fleets, flexibility, and accessibility.
- Decentralisation of energy systems: acceleration of the electric vehicle with more renewable energy production, lowering of electricity prices at peak times, and freeing more capacity for charging.
- Regulation: Tax breaks and incentives for electric vehicles and use of other sustainable transport could boost integrated mobility in many cities.
More road-safety, clean air, less congestion… Sounds good, does it? I am waiting for it. It’s hip to be green!
If you want to read more about the McKinsey analysis, here comes the link. Enjoy!