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FISITA PLUS 2020 - Beate Kubitz: Smart transport options

16 June 2020

Transport Consultant Beate Kubitz will be speaking at FISITA PLUS on Thursday 2 July on the topic of “MaaS: The centre will not hold (without the suburbs, the peri-urban areas and the small towns)”. We asked her a few questions prior to the event:

What are the major projects you and your organisation are currently working on?

I’ve just published a report on electric vehicle and e-cargo bike adoption by Manchester City Council, Manchester University and Manchester Metropolitan University, completed a piece of work about rural Mobility as a Service and social care transport in Cambridgeshire and a project on the feasibility and potential location of mobility hubs in Calderdale.

How has your work been affected by coronavirus?

As a response to the crisis, I set up an e-cargo bike delivery service in my home town of Todmorden. This is very much a ’transport experiment’ to see whether electric cargo bikes can meet delivery needs in a small, rural town. It’s been really exciting to see something you’d normally only have in a city centre translated into a rural environment and work!

How long do you expect the impact of coronavirus will last and what long-term effects will it have on the areas of the industry that you focus on?

The impacts will be long term as people change their working patterns and travel behaviour to maintain social distancing. I suspect that working from home has become embedded in many more people’s jobs and travel for conferences and events will recover to some extent but not return to pre-corona levels. The uplift in cycling will remain as people look for cheap and socially distanced travel solutions. The impact on cars and public transport will be more nuanced – at the same time as driving is perceived as safer, there will also be economic consequences which may lead people to re-evaluate the costs of car ownership. If public transport can provide guaranteed, spaced out, seating to meet social distancing requirements it may improve passengers’ experience. 

What are you planning on talking about at FISITA PLUS and what types of people do you think will benefit from what you have to say?

Mobility as a Service (MaaS) has long been regarded as the answer to city mobility issues - replacing car ownership with a combination of public and shared transport to create end to end journeys and improve congestion and air quality. However, the issue is that outside city centres we don’t have good enough options so people will still drive into cities because they don’t have better mobility options close to where they set out. If we want Mobility as a Service to work, we need to look at smart transport options so that people have good options at both the origin and destination of their journey. I will look at some of the data – and some possible solutions.

Register to attend The Mobility Eco-system session including Beate’s presentation on Thursday 2 July here.

FISITA PLUS will happen every Thursday throughout July. Find out more in a recent LinkedIn post by FISITA CEO Chris Mason. Registration for the four tracks with a choice of European morning and afternoon sessions (to suit attendees in different time zones) is available as follows: