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public transport – topos 126

Theresa Ramisch

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Paris is tripling its parking fees for SUVs from September 2024, in Vienna drivers have been paying a fine of 365 euros since last autumn if they obstruct public transport by parking incorrectly, and in Singapore car buyers have had to purchase a Certificate of Entitlement since 1990 in addition to the car, registration fee and taxes, which currently amounts to the equivalent of 106,000 US dollars. More and more cities have started to charge drivers to pay to combat gridlock and promote climate-friendly mobility. Exciting ideas that are supposed to bring the comfortably seat-heated bottoms of this world onto buses, trains or even bicycles.

However, these measures are of little use as long as local public transport cannot provide an equally impressive service. This means ensuring that people in major cities can get from A to B quickly, cheaply, comfortably, punctually and reliably by using alternative modes of transport. There are many shortcomings in this area around the world. And we haven’t even touched on the topics of “accessibility” and “digitalization” yet. Nevertheless, in recent years, more and more politically controversial measures for the benefit of the mobility transition have been pushed through in response to the energy and climate crisis. After years of stagnation, noticeable movement seems to be coming to the world’s major cities.

In this issue, we therefore take an indepth look at Paris, Tokyo, and Zurich, among others. We also look at water mobility and the latest PT innovations. We want to know: Where is the future of public transportation taking us? And: Where do we have to make adjustments? Because readjustment definitely is the order of the day. For Europe, this was confirmed at the beginning of the year by the newly founded Future Mobility Taskforce. The taskforce was formally launched in a meeting with the European Commissioner for Transport, Adina Vălean, in Brussels, with the goal to provide “guidance to policymakers for the next legislative mandate in the area of innovation and startups in the transportation sector”.

Aura Aero, Bolt, Cabify, CARTO, Dronamics, EVBox, EV Connect, Fastned, Flix, Lilium, MaasGlobal, Nevomo, Omio, OTIV, Scoobic, Volocopter, Voi and Virta – the taskforce consortium is made up of the founders and CEOs of the so-called “European Mobility Unicorns”, established companies with a valuation of over one billion US dollars as well as so-called Soonicorns, start-ups and companies that are expected to reach this threshold. Their fields of activity range from ride-hailing, micromobility rental to hyperloop and air mobility – but all have the goal of using modern technologies and profitable and disruptive business models to make the mobility of the future more sustainable.

This alliance is so remarkable because with this official reception by Commissioner Adina Vălean, the European Commission publicly recognizes that sustainable mobility is no longer the sole responsibility of the cities themselves. That the public sector urgently needs the private sector to take mobility to the next level, not only in terms of implementation, but also in terms of strategy. According to them their current challenges are: outdated and fragmented regulation, lack of enforcement, market entry barriers, access to finance and data accessibility. Their first, big task is to give a comprehensive report with all the findings and recommendations of the individual members. We are eager to see what role public transport will play in this – and to what extent cities in Europe and around the world will take up these ideas. This we would definitely recommend.

Get the topos 126 here.

 

With topos 125 we want to focus on an urban issue that is so brutal that almost everyone would rather look the other way than take action: poverty. We want to use this issue of topos magazine to get in touch planners, city leaders and entrepreneurs, those people and projects, that work every day to create a more equitable metropolis of the future that provides warmth, food and shelter for everyone. Read more in the editorial of topos 125 – poverty.

 

 

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