Increasing need for UK cities mobility infrastructure to become more intelligent
The recent UK Government Spring Budget saw the announcement of the latest winners of the Transforming Cities Fund grant and Future Transport Zones awards.
Leeds, Bradford, and Sheffield were among the winning cities, with Portsmouth and Southampton, the West of England Combined Authority and Derby and Nottingham to become future transport zones.
The resulting multi-million pound schemes launched across regions of the UK will help to reduce carbon emissions from transport operations, increase the uptake of sustainable travel and transform a city’s local air quality. All of these schemes will require the implementation of smart city activities to be successful, which will require greater collaboration between the public and private sector to accelerate the adoption of smart systems and technologies.
Our cities are growing at an unprecedented rate in comparison to rural areas, with the four biggest cities (London, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow) accounting for almost a quarter of the total UK population (24%).
This growth is putting more strain on transport services to meet growing demand and this in turn puts pressure on local authorities to ensure that they have a strong mobility strategy; and an increasing number of electric vehicles (EVs) joining our roads adds even further infrastructure complications. Increasingly there is the need for cities and the mobility infrastructure to become more intelligent, more data driven, ultimately smart.
Smart cities bring together infrastructure and technology to improve the quality of life for citizens and enhance their interactions with the urban environment. It’s a massive topic, and one where local authorities are a key influencer.