A smarter transport system that caters for social, economic and environmental sustainability is arguably one of the most critical prerequisites for creating pathways to more livable urban futures. This paper aims to provide a state-of-the-art analysis of a selection of mobility initiatives that may dictate the future of urban transportation and make cities smarter. These are mechanisms either recently introduced with encouraging uptake so far and much greater potential to contribute in a shift to a better transport paradigm or still in an embryonic stage of their development and yet to be embraced as powerful mechanisms that could change travel behaviour norms. Autonomous and connected vehicles are set to revolutionise the urban landscape by allowing machines to take over driving that for over a century has been exclusively a human activity, while electrical vehicles are already helping decarbonising the transport sector. Bus rapid transit has been steadily reinventing and rebranding conventional bus services revitalising the use of the humblest form of public transport, while hyperloop is an entirely new, disruptive, and somewhat provocative, travel mode proposition based on the use of sealed tube systems through which pods could travel free of air resistance with speeds exceeding 1000 km/h. Shared use mobility mechanisms like car-sharing, ride-sharing, ride-sourcing and public bicycles can help establishing a culture for using mobility resources on an as-needed basis, while mobility-as-a-service will take this sharing culture a step further, offering tailored mobility and trip planning packages that could entirely replace the need for privately owned modes of transport.
Nikitas, A., Kougias, I., Alyavina, E., & Tchouamou Njoya, E. (2017). How Can Autonomous and Connected Vehicles, Electromobility, BRT, Hyperloop, Shared Use Mobility and Mobility-As-A-Service Shape Transport Futures for the Context of Smart Cities? Urban Science, 1(4), . https://doi.org/10.3390/urbansci1040036