Public transport and shared mobility during and after a social distancing society

News - 11 June 2020 - Transport Institute

Public transport has not been the same since the corona crisis. The first challenge was to keep a safe distance in the train, tram, metro or bus and in multiple countries Public Transport, is currently (fully) opening up again. What measures are needed and what structural changes will we see? And what will be the effect on Mobility as a Service (MaaS)?

Niels van Oort and Oded Cats take a closer look at these questions. Together they lead the Smart Public Transport Lab of TU Delft, where 25 researchers and 20 students do research in order to make public transport more efficient. 

Especially very busy lines with a variety in origins and destinations contribute to a high degree of contact between many different persons, who can potentially spread the virus further. Even though passengers are required to wear protective equipment such as face masks since the start of June, there still shouldn’t be much travelling at the same time. Spreading passengers over time and space becomes essential.

This means demand management will play a key role: People will be more likely to opt for the car and individual services such as Uber will be extra competitive to the public transport sector. 

However, this ‘new normal’ might be the breakthrough for Mobility as a Service, as this enables and facilitates a smooth use of different (new) modes by providing an integrated platform for information and payments. In addition, there could be a role for MaaS platforms to facilitate a potential booking system for public transport, and to apply different fares and priorities for different sectors or risk groups.

Read the full article here