Skip to menu Skip to content

Automated vehicles: a potential game changer for urban mobility

Go to page content
Automated vehicles: a potential game changer for urban mobility

Cities play a crucial role as engines of the economy, as places of connectivity, creativity and innovation. As one of the latest developments in mobility, the arrival of automated vehicles (AVs) represents a unique opportunity for a fundamental change in urban mobility that could result in healthier, more competitive and greener cities.

Integration is key

The SPACE project centres on the notion that this will only happen if AVs are used as shared vehicles that are integrated into an effective public transport network.

©Ruter, Visjon for Majorstuen

©VOLVO

By employing AVs as shared vehicles, such as shuttle buses or in car or ride-sharing schemes, AVs could drastically reduce car ownership, regain essential urban space, and result in better mobility for all. This is further described in the UITP policy brief “Autonomous Vehicles: a potential game changer for urban mobility”.

A mission to SPACE - Project objectives

Assess the impacts of automated and connected road transport systems

Develop operational concepts and business models for the best use of AVs in passenger services

Create a global overview of AV pilots and initiatives

Progress map

Advocate for a harmonised framework to allow the safe operation of AVs in real mobility scenarios

To reach these objectives - the SPACE project will look at four different aspects of AVs

Practical scenarios and how to get there

In this chapter we will provide you with a guide on how to reach the scenario where fleets of shared AVs are integrated into public transport. You will also find various scenarios of AVs in urban, suburban or rural settings, categorised by the level of integration with public transport, the vehicle equipment needs and the target users.

Toolkit Chapter 1

Technical specifications

If we plan to integrate fleets of AVs with public transport, what does it mean from a technical point of view? In this chapter we look at which technical specifications are required to develop and deploy the scenarios we identified in Chapter 1 of the toolkit.

Toolkit Chapter 2

AV pilots and initiatives around the world

From one-vehicle pilots to fleets of already operating commercial AV services: this interactive map shows the progress of shared AV initiatives in the world.

Toolkit Chapter 2

Impact assessment

In this chapter we will look at the impact of the integration of AVs with public transport on matters such as customer experience, human resources, business models, operations, digital infrastructure, urban space, and legislative framework.

Toolkit Chapter 3

©PostAuto

Toolkit

Lexicon

7 words explained

platooning

Also known as flocking. A collection of (automated) vehicles that travel together, actively coordinated in formation. Platoons decrease the distances between vehicles using electronic, and possibly mechanical, coupling. Platooning allows many vehicles to accelerate or brake simultaneously.

urban setting

High density environment with an efficient high capacity public transport system with good capillarity and high frequencies.

suburban setting

Medium density environment with a good public transport system with radial connections to the city center, but lower capillarity and frequencies. This setting includes suburban cities.

small cities

Small, isolated city with an own public transport system and <100K inhabitants.

rural

Low-density environment, small cities and villages with poor public transport services mainly connecting the villages.

SAE level

The SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) levels define the level of vehicle autonomy, or in other words, how much human intervention is still needed for an automated vehicle to operate. Currently, five SAE levels have been defined: Level 0: Automated system issues warnings and may momentarily intervene but has no sustained vehicle control. Level 1 (hands on): Driver and automatic system share vehicle control. The driver must be ready to retake full control at any time. Level 2 (hands off): The automated system takes full control of the vehicle (accelerating, braking, and steering). The driver must monitor the driving and be prepared to intervene immediately at any time if the automated system fails to respond properly. Level 3 (eyes off): The automated system takes full control of the vehicle (accelerating, braking, and steering). The driver must monitor the driving and be prepared to intervene immediately at any time if the automated system fails to respond properly. Level 4 (mind off): As level 3, but no driver attention is ever required for safety, e.g. the driver may safely go to sleep or leave the driver's seat. Level 5 (steering wheel optional): No human intervention is required at all. An example would be a robotic taxi.

V2X

Vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communication is the passing of information from a vehicle to any entity that may affect the vehicle, and vice versa.