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Understanding urban freight stakeholder’s response to last mile green solutions

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Tom ZunderORCiD, Dr Paulus AditjandraORCiD


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This research adopts Design and Monitoring Framework (DMF) methodology to better understand and to identify urban freight stakeholders’ needs with pros and cons to improve their last mile urban freight. The methodology is commonly used in developing environments and countries, so the application of DMF in the developed environment can be considered novel and this paper further extends this by its application to the promotion of sustainable urban freight. The introduction of green vehicle technologies, urban consolidation centres, planning and telematics in urban delivery, and regional and urban freight policies were the key aspects promoted to the urban freight stakeholders. The DMF were employed across three different cities and regions in Europe: City of Berlin, Germany; City of Como, Italy; and City of Newcastle upon-Tyne, UK. Series of workshops involving multi-stakeholder consultations were held across the three cities and regions to identify and to agree on how best to achieve greener last mile freight. In Berlin, 2 workshops and one bilateral meeting has resulted into an agreement between the City of Berlin and the local multimodal logistics centre to use larger hybrid electric truck for inner city deliveries and a route planning optimisation device for improved fuel efficiency – an Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) device – on an 8 kilometres corridor. Political support and market conditioning were being identified as the key aspects towards the sustainable urban freight initiative in Berlin. The City of Como, together with the Region of Lombardia, had undergone 2 workshops and an interim workshop involving mainly local businesses within an historic touristic town. The main commitment achieved in Como was revitalisation of urban consolidation centre with support of low traffic zone regime and uptake of the electric vehicle (EV). In the City of Newcastle, 2 workshops and an interim meeting were held that resulted into a commitment by one of the largest employer in the region, a leading University, to utilise new procurement approach, delivery and servicing plan, and internal consolidation centre with EV and ITS support. An on-going coherent campus strategy embedding environmental sustainability as key message of the University was identified to create momentum for big employer as receiver to pursue green urban freight initiative. The main strength of the DMF approach was the engagement of different stakeholders from the very beginning of the project. This approach has shaped the project itself based on common understanding. From the monitoring perspective, the early involvement of stakeholders also helped define the possible existing data sources and create commitment to providing the data. From the DMF process in the three cities, it was recognised that DMF is a time-consuming process. It was not possible every time to involve all stakeholders and have open sessions that refer to limited willingness to participate. This is especially true in the case of Newcastle, the fact that there was limited support and interest from some local stakeholders (the opposite of Como and Berlin) was an important barrier to the DMF process. The outcomes of the consultations were very dependent on the organisers / facilitators of the consultations which were partly due to unfamiliarity of the DMF process by all participants. This process was modified in practice, and this seems in line with the nature of urban freight as a highly localised activity. The process in Berlin and Como was focused on defining the existing objective, the process in Newcastle was more open and has generated more actions and interventions which have a wider more ‘holistic’ approach to the issues.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Menge J, Zunder TH, Schoemaker JT, Aditjandra PT, Laparidou K, Vaghi C

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: 2013 Annual Polis Conference

Year of Conference: 2013

Publisher: Polis Network