New project MOBILITIES for EU wants to electrify urban transport

The project MOBILITIES for EU, which kicked off at the end of January 2024, wants to help cities go green. The goal is to implement new mobility and freight transport concepts. Madrid and Dresden will be the first to pilot the ideas.

Image: Mercamadrid (Josetxu Miguel)

The project’s central themes are electrification, automation and connectivity of urban transport. The two so-called “Lead Cities”, Madrid (Spain) and Dresden (Germany), will “demonstrate the effectiveness of 27 innovative mobility solutions in eleven pilot actions,” the press release states. These include small self-driving electric buses for public transport and the development of a “Sovereign Mobility Decentralised Data Ecosystem for automated driving.”

After the solutions tested in the Lead Cities, they will be passed on to “Replication Cities,” namely Ioannina (Greece), Trenčin (Slovakia), Espoo (Finland), Gdansk (Poland), and Sarajevo (Bosnia & Herzegovina). They will try to replicate processes trialled in Madrid and Dresden and design their adaptations for the tested solutions.

The implementation of new solutions for urban mobility can only be effective if they meet the needs of city residents and other local stakeholders. Therefore, Urban Transport Labs (UT Labs) will be set up in all seven project cities to involve these stakeholders and play an important role in the project. The labs are involved in all project phases, especially in the co-design of pilot activities and in the planning of up-scaling and replication activities after the project duration.

“The big strength of MOBILITIES for EU is its holistic approach. The demonstration of 27 innovative urban mobility solutions for both passengers and freight as well as tackling the big area of mobility infrastructure will provide crucial insights to everyone working in the field of electric, automated and connected mobility,” says Julia Vicente Gómez, MOBILITIES for EU project coordinator and renowned expert in the field of urban transformation towards climate neutrality. “A key component for me is the establishment of local Urban Transport Labs in our project cities. Through the Labs, we gather the wide variety of perspectives across sectors and professions. In the end, we can only achieve climate neutrality in our cities if we work together, break silos and design innovation centred around actual urban needs.”

The project is set to run for five years and brings together 29 partners from nine European countries. It is funded under the framework of Horizon Europe and is just one approach to implementing the European Green Deal and making the formulated goals a reality.

The European Green Deal aims to make Europe climate-neutral by 2050. Cities are responsible for the majority of emissions and therefore have a major impact on achieving the ambitious European target. Their path to climate neutrality can ensure co-benefits such as reduced air and noise pollution, improved health and well-being and a smaller environmental footprint for cities.


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