• 30 June 2020
  • Covid-19

  • by

COVID Mobility Works – Keeping transport systems moving

By Leonie Guskowski

Within the course of just a few months, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed mobility patterns and behavior significantly. To prevent the spread of the virus, lockdowns and social distancing have decreased the need to travel and there has been a shift regarding the preferred modes of transport. While the use of public transport has decreased substantially, other modes of transport have become more popular. Cities all over the world have come up with innovative mobility measures to prevent the spread of the virus while still promoting sustainable mobility.

A partnership of nonprofit transportation organizations has launched a new digital database of global mobility responses to the public health and safety crisis brought on by the new coronavirus.

COVID Mobility Works is an independent platform dedicated to collecting, synthesizing and sharing mobility initiatives that are keeping the world moving through the COVID-19 crisis. Recognizing the myriad actions taken to support safe mobility around the world, the platform is intended to support policymakers, innovators, researchers, service operators and advocates as they rise to the challenge of creating more resilient, inclusive and sustainable transportation systems for all.

Daniel Moser, Management Head of TUMI: “Corona has brought cities around the world to terms with a much needed catch-up in terms of sustainable infrastructure. Millions of people are already enjoying a more equitable distribution of space by using new cycling highways. Going forward the key task will be to make these changes permanent. With COVID Mobility Works we offer – together with our partners – the key platform to support policy making, innovation, research for more sustainable mobility action during this crisis.”

The platform is the result of a partnership of global nonprofit organizations — including NUMO, the New Urban Mobility alliance; Polis; TNO; Transportation Sustainability Research Center, University of California, Berkeley; the Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative; Urbanism Next and the World Economic Forum’s Global New Mobility Coalition — dedicated to resilient, inclusive and sustainable mobility for all.

Cities and policy makers have become more aware of the crucial role of Tactical Urbanism. The short-term, low-cost, and scalable interventions have been substantial to ensure the citizens’ mobility while being able to maintain social distancing. Measures such as the promotion of Open Streets or the construction of temporary bike lanes have gained popularity, both among policy makers and citizens.

Over 500 responses from 225 cities have been initially collected on COVID Mobility Works, and the partners plan to add new entries monthly through Spring 2021. These responses — ranging from actions taken to safely continue mobility services for essential workers to addressing the provision of transportation services to identifying modifications to critical infrastructure — represent public, private and nongovernmental organization efforts to ensure the movement of people and goods during and after the new coronavirus pandemic.

On May 26th, TUMI TV featured a large number of guests from all over the world talking about mobility impacts of the pandemic, cities’ measures, tactical urbanism as well as economic and ecologic impacts of the ‘new normal’ we have been facing. See all contributions on our YouTube Channel!

Partners of COVID Mobility Works are:

NUMO, the New Urban Mobility alliance, is a global organization that channels tech-based disruptions in urban transport to create joyful cities where sustainable and just mobility is the new normal. NUMO is hosted by WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities. For more information, visit www.numo.global.

The Global New Mobility Coalition, curated by the World Economic Forum, is an active and diverse community of over 150 globally renowned experts, NGOs and companies dedicated to accelerating the shift to a Shared, Electric and Autonomous Mobility (“SEAM”) system that provides for healthier cities, reduces carbon emissions by 95%, improves mobility efficiency by 70% and decreases commuting costs by 40%, while tapping into a 600 billion-dollar business. For more information, visit www.weforum.org/projects/global-new-mobility-coalition.

Urbanism Next, a University research center at the University of Oregon, conducts research and convenes partners from around the globe to build shared understandings of the effects of emerging technologies. Going beyond the technologies themselves, Urbanism Next explores the possible future implications for cities, people, and communities to inform better decision-making today. For more information, visit www.urbanismnext.org.

POLIS is the leading European network of cities and regions working on urban transport innovation. For more information, visit https://www.polisnetwork.eu/

TNO, the Netherlands Organisation for applied scientific research, connects people and knowledge to create innovations that boost the sustainable competitive strength of industry and well-being of society. For more information, visit www.tno.nl/en/

TUMI, Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative, is a coalition of nonprofits and intergovernmental organisations devoted to improvinge mobility systems around the world. Formed through the union of 11 prestigious partners: ADB, GIZ, ITDP, CAF, KFW, C40, ICLAI, SLOCAT, UN Habitat and WRI, TUMI’s partners are united in one mission: changing mobility for the benefit of people and the environment, through three pillars: innovation, knowledge, investment. For more information, visit www.transformative-mobility.org/

UC Berekely’s Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC) studies the economic, social, environmental, and technological aspects of sustainable transportation. For more information, visit tsrc.berkeley.edu/

“Millions of people are already enjoying safe distancing and a more equitible distribution of space by using new cycling highways. Going forward the key task will be to make these changes permanent. With COVID Mobility Works we offer – together with our partners – the key platform to support policy making, innovation, research for more sustainable mobility action during this crisis.“

Daniel Moser, Management Head of TUMI