After more than three years of research and numerous months of deployment on the road, the time has come for SHOW to disseminate its achievements! The perfect opportunity for this presented itself in the form of the UITP Global Public Transport Summit, held in Barcelona from 4 to 7 June 2023.
Being the biggest event in the world dedicated to sustainable mobility, SHOW partners took part in various sessions on automation. From large congress sessions, to exhibition presentations, to intimate poster sessions: SHOW had the opportunity to showcase project outcomes and lessons learned from its pilots to a wide array of public transport stakeholders. Read on for some of the highlights!
Exchanging worldwide lessons learned on AV deployment
On the Tuesday, experts from around the world joined to share insights on AV deployments, comparing existing services (shuttles, robotaxis, buses), and their respective opportunities and limitations.
Focused on the EU in the morning with speakers from SHOW and ULTIMO and a global perspective from US, Japan, South Korea and Australia in the afternoon, participants identified where we are now in terms of technology, regulations, and business models and discussed the immediate next steps and the real long-term potential of how AVs can enhance public transit in terms e.g., of safety, accessibility, and frequency of services.
Recent deployments of automated ride-hailing services in the United States were highlighted, and the stakeholders were challenged to consider how the public transport sector can keep pace with the progress of the technology around the world.
What about the bigger buses on our roads?
Shifting the focus to automated buses, this session addressed automation technologies and their respective benefits and the development of AVs into the various sizes of road public transport.
Moderated by Dr Henriette Cornet, CCAM Thematic Area Leader at UITP, the session welcomed to the stage Carlos Sierra, Director of Transport Services at EMT Madrid, who discussed how the operator will build on their activities in SHOW. “We are seeing further development of services in additional projects,” he said, adding that while PTOs are already convinced that autonomous mobility solutions are mature enough to be deployed in semi-controlled environments, there are still uncertainties of open traffic situations.
Putting the spotlight on SHOW
The spotlight session ‘Automated vehicle fleets gaining in speed and size: connecting the conversation to public transport’ gathered a large audience on the Tuesday, welcoming high-level speakers from Uber Transit, the Jacksonville Transportation Authority, the French Ministry of Transport, and the Saudi Transport General Authority.
The session looked at the experiences from operational cases and discussed how far the AV revolution has come.
It was made clear that everybody has its role to play: successful operation models rely on the involvement of stakeholders like PTAs, mobility players like Uber and regulating bodies working jointly on making the best of the technology for the customers.
And there was a lot more to discover about SHOW at the Summit! In the e-poster session “Operational deployment of automated vehicles in 15 EU cities” SHOW Coordinator John Mc Sweeney explained project demos to a small but very interested audience, SHOW material was disseminated at the UITP stand, and across the entire conference project partners exchanged with public transport stakeholders about how automated mobility can advance sustainable transport.
The UITP Automated Mobility Working Group met on the sidelines of the Summit. The numerous learnings from the EU projects and the international collaboration fed discussions with the UITP members interested and active in the field.
Let’s keep disseminating SHOW results at major conferences!