Freight transport is vital to creating liveable cities, but can bring negative impacts including considerable carbon emissions from vehicles. The UFT-SUSTAIN project is co-financed by Climate KIC, and looks at developing a user-friendly method to help local authorities with their partners to develop urban freight terminals that allow for an effective urban goods delivery system and at the same time reduce negative impacts from urban freight. An Urban Freight Terminal (UFT) is a facility that allows operators of freight distribution in the city to consolidate flows of goods for deliveries in inner-city areas. Transport operators deliver their goods to the UFT, which are then delivered to the end-user in a coordinated way. The UFT vehicles which make the last mile delivery are small goods vehicles that run on low-carbon fuel.
Requires multi-stakeholder cooperation
Public authorities want to introduce UFTs because – if introduced successfully – they contribute to urban policy aims such as reduction of carbon emissions, air pollution, noise, congestion and more liveable urban areas. While public authorities are generally the primary instigators of UFTs, their implementation requires multi-stakeholder cooperation covering public authorities, private transport companies, real-estate companies, retailers, etc. The main stakeholders are generally the city authority (instigator) and private transport operators (who use, and ultimately pay for the service). Freight transport is performed by private operators who have different aims from local authorities (e.g. optimising own flows, providing a good service for their customers), and in order for them to use a UFT, there needs to be a clear value for them to do so.
SMARTSET shows that it is possible
Many previous projects with urban freight terminals have failed to run over a long-term or achieve financial sustainability. Market-based business models are in fact crucial for the long-term running of urban freight terminals. The SMARTSET project (co-funded by the Intelligent Energy Europe II Programme), in which Trivector was partner, has shown that it is possible to create fully market-driven urban freight solutions that reduce emissions and energy use and help to make more liveable inner city areas.
A user-friendly practical method
The idea of UFT-SUSTAIN is to replicate and scale the results of SMARTSET to allow more cities to reap the benefits of UFTs, through developing a method that allows cities to implement UFTs without having to make the same mistakes over and over again. UFT-SUSTAIN will develop a user-friendly practical method to help develop business models for UFTs, allowing cities to implement UFTs together with their partners, without having to make the same mistakes over and over again. The project group consists of 4 partners covering public and private sectors.
For more information, please contact Anna Clark, 010-456 56 23.