Deloitte Digital Age Transportation report - Feb 2013

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Deloitte Digital Age Transportation report - Feb 2013

Deloitte Digital Age Transportation report - Feb 2013

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  • 1. Digital-AgeTransportation:The Future ofUrban Mobility
  • 2. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityAbout the author Tiffany Dovey Fishman A manager with Deloitte Research, Deloitte Services LP, Tiffany Dovey Fishman is responsible for public sector research and thought leadership for Deloitte’s public sector industry practice. Her research focuses on how emerging issues in technology, business, and society will impact public sector organizations. She has written extensively on a wide range of public policy and management issues and her work has appeared in a number of publications, including Public CIO, Governing and EducationWeek. Tiffany can be reached by email at or twitter @tdoveyfishman.Acknowledgements A number of Deloitte colleagues generously contributed their time and insights to this report, including: William Eggers, Allen Hockenbury, Jessica Blume and Felix Martinez of Deloitte Services LP; Jim Ziglar of Deloitte Financial Services LLP; Stephen Keathley, Jim Templeton, Alene Tchourumoff, Bryan Rodda and Matthew Bulley of Deloitte Consulting LLP; and Ian Simpson of Deloitte UK. The report benefited immensely from the insights of Sean O’Sullivan of Avego, Chris Borroni- Bird of General Motors, Paul Minett of the Ridesharing Institute, Marcus Bowman of 3G Mobility, LLC, Jeffrey Chernick of RideAmigos Corp, Rob Zimmer of Battelle, Susan Grant- Muller of the Institute for Transport Studies at University of Leeds, Ryan Popple of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Kari Watkins of the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Susan Shaheen of the Transportation Sustainability Research Center at the University of California, Berkeley, and from the writing talents of Rob Gurwitt. In addition, thanks go to all of the innovators, policymakers, technologists, and subject matter experts at the forefront of the transformation of mobility who participated in Deloitte’s session on the future of transportation. Lastly, thanks must be extended to Troy Bishop of Deloitte Services LP for the development of the report’s layout and infographics and to Aditi Rao of Deloitte Support Services India Pvt Ltd for the copy editing of the report.
  • 3. ContentsForeword | 2Executive summary | 3Introduction | 6Features of digital-age transportation systems | 11Three scenarios for digital-age transportation | 23Looking ahead | 35Appendix: Forum participants | 36Endnotes | 38 1
  • 4. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityForeword C HANGE is coming to transportation, whether we’re ready for it or not. You can see it in automakers’ focus on next-generation contain if we take full advantage of the techno- logical and organizational breakthroughs that are already apparent. vehicles, in the arrival of services that help This report builds from that session. It urbanites get around without owning a car, in consists of three parts: a brief discussion of the the widening recognition that the “informa- forces and innovations that underlie the quick- tion everywhere” world will utterly disrupt the ening pace of change; the basic features of the transportation status quo. coming system that are likely to shape the ways Every feature of the automobile, from its in which we get around; and three different— drive train to its communication with the though often complementary—scenarios for world around it, is being rethought. “Smart what that system might look like. Its purpose is infrastructure” projects are becoming com- not to discern the details of the future. Instead, monplace. Sharing rides, bikes, and cars and it recognizes that the future is fast approaching other entrepreneurial business models are and that whatever it looks like, the regulatory, spreading, built on the recognition that empty tax and funding structures we rely on today car seats and idle vehicles form an immense were built for a transportation system that is “wasted asset.” The ability to gather road and being superseded. To be sure, infrastructure transit mobility data—from smartphones or itself is notoriously slow to evolve—whether it’s dedicated transceivers—and push informa- expanding in the face of congestion or adapt- tion back to users is changing everything ing to new transport capabilities—and on that from infrastructure planning to commuters’ front change is arriving more slowly. daily experience. The question of who pays But new ways of using existing infrastruc- for transportation—and how, and under what ture more efficiently are coming on the scene circumstances—has become ever more lively as with great speed. They offer the chance to the ability to track vehicles and to use elec- rethink our mobility challenges—and prepare tronic means of payment spread. for a transportation system undergirded by a With all this in mind, Deloitte convened a very different set of features from the one we session following the Transportation Research grew up with. The challenge that policymak- Board’s 2012 annual meeting in Washington ers face—and that everyone from auto manu- DC to consider the various permutations facturers to transit officials to for-profit and of what lies ahead. The session included a nonprofit entrepreneurs confront every day—is distinguished array of transportation vision- how to respond. This report is an effort to aries, thinkers and doers (see appendix for begin to lay out an answer. a full list of participants). The wide-ranging and thought-provoking discussion produced William D. Eggers intriguing points of agreement about the fea- Global Director, Public Sector Research tures and qualities that the coming transporta- Senior Advisor, GovLab tion system might contain—or, at least, might2
  • 5. Executive summaryI NCREDIBLE innovations within the trans- portation sector are being driven by thegrowing recognition that cars, once synony- go from conception to delivery. Yet there are innovative new ways of making more efficient use of existing infrastructure already comingmous with freedom and ease of mobility, have onto the scene.become a victim of their own success. In cities With this in mind, Deloitte convened aaround the world, congestion is undermin- distinguished array of transportation visionar-ing mobility, imposing huge costs not just on ies, thinkers and doers to consider the variouscommuters or people out permutations of whatto run a simple errand lies ahead. The wide-but on society as a whole.According to the Texas The arrival of ranging and thought- provoking discussionTransportation Institute,the average American the “information produced intriguing points of agreementcommuter spent 34hours delayed in traffic in everywhere” world about the features and qualities that the coming2010, up from 14 hoursin 1982. If things don’t has opened up new transportation system might contain—or, atchange, commuters canexpect to spend more opportunities to least, might contain if we take full advantagethan 40 hours annuallysitting in traffic by 2020.1 make the existing of the technological and organizationalAll told, the annual costof congestion in America transportation breakthroughs that are already apparent.alone now exceeds$100 billion.2 network far more The arrival of the “information every- The problem thatconfronts transportation efficient and where” world has opened up new oppor-planners is that addingnew infrastructure capac- user friendly. tunities to make the existing transportationity to relieve conges- network far more effi-tion is notoriously slow cient and user friendly.and costly. Given the environmental issues Coupled with new transportation capacity, theto be explored, land to be acquired, permits changes spurred by technological change andobtained, people moved, and construction the innovations it inspires will help preserveundertaken, it can take years, if not decades, to freedom of mobility in the 21st century. 3
  • 6. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility Services like real-time ridesharing and car access, consume, create and share information sharing, for instance, are helping urbanites get with other vehicles and surrounding infra- around without owning a car—and are mak- structure in real time—improving traffic flow ing the private vehicle a de facto extension of and safety. And dynamic pricing mechanisms the public transportation system. New apps for roads, parking spaces and shared-use assets are allowing commuters to compare the time, are helping balance supply and demand, much cost, convenience, carbon footprint and health the same way the airline and hotel industries benefits across all modes of public and private have been pricing seats and rooms for years. transport, broadening their range of choices The result of these innovations—and of the and allowing for on-the-fly decision making ecosystem of creative players that have been that takes into account real-time conditions. drawn to transportation, from information For their part, automakers are focused on technology companies to ridesharing pioneers next-generation “connected vehicles” that canFigure 1. Preparing for the future urban transport system: A roadmap for public transportation officials LEVERAGE THIRD PARTY TRAFFIC DATA and analytics for real-time traffic managementSHIFT FROM A CULTURE in which state and and incident responselocal transportation department employeesidentify as ‘builders of transportation New Jersey uses a crowdsourced traffic datainfrastructure assets’ to one in which solution that gives the state real-time visibility intoagency employees view their role traffic conditions across the state road network.more broadly as ‘managers of thetransportation network’ PUBLISH PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION DATA as a GTFS feed DEVELOP MULTIMODAL TRIP PLANNERS City-Go-Round provides the public with to help citizens compare all modes of access to useful transportation apps that public and private transport OPTIMIZE THE have been developed using open Century City’s “Virtual TMO” allows PERFORMANCE OF government data. commuters to compare the time, cost, THE NETWORK convenience, carbon footprint, and health benefits of different modes of public and EXAMINE HOW EXISTING BUSINESS private transport. MODELS CAN BE RE-IMAGINED in light of digital disruption Boston’s “Street Bump” app uses smartphones to identify potholes and streets that need repaving as their owners drive over them. PUT LEGISLATION IN PLACE CHANGE THE METRICS to promote new forms of from vehicle throughput to public-private collaboration people throughput to reinforce a broader view of mobility In 2012, the U.S. Congress expanded the definition of carpool projects to include real-time ridesharing. ADOPT A NETWORKED VIEWPROMOTE NEW MULTIMODAL payment mechanisms tofacilitate easy transfers across different modes Singapore’s ez-Link card allows for secure, contactless payments for TIE TRANSPORTATION FUNDING buses, trains, and certain taxi services; drivers can use the card for to improvements in overall electronic road pricing and electronic parking system payments. transportation system performance4
  • 7. to app makers—is that the mobility field will • Reliant on new models of private-publiclook very different going forward. It will be: collaboration, which take advantage of the • Massively networked, with ubiquitous con- increasingly diverse ecosystem of public, nectivity throughout the system private, and nonprofit entities that are working to meet the mobility challenges of • Dynamically priced, so as to balance sup- the 21st century ply and demand To take advantage of these innovations, • User centered, taking into account users’ policymakers must start laying the ground- needs, priorities, data flows, and dynamic work for a digital-age transportation system responses to conditions (see figure 1). • Integrated, so that users can move eas- ily from point A to point B, regardless of mode, service provider, or time of day REMOVE LEGISLATIVE AND REGULATORY BARRIERS to new mobility services California passed legislation designed to facilitate personal vehicle sharing arrangements, exempting automobile owners from insurance regulations PROTECT CITIZENS that prohibit the rental of personal vehicles by understanding the privacy to others unless the car is classified as issues related to location-based a livery vehicle. data, and developing adequate privacy safeguards with a focus on educating citizens and consumers about what data is being collected and how it’s being used The White House’s digital privacy framework and “consumer privacy bill of rights” are helping to shape the U.S. federalADDRESS THE government’s response to theCYBERSECURITY ISSUES LAY THE GROUNDWORK ongoing challenges of privacy inrelated to connected the digital age. FOR NEXT-GENERATIONvehicle technology VEHICLES AND MOBILITY SERVICES PUT IN PLACE THE REQUISITE LEGISLATIVE IMPLEMENT VARIABLE PRICING AND REGULATORY FRAMEWORKS pilots to balance supply of road and for the development, testing and operation parking assets with demand of next-generation driverless vehicles San Francisco’s SFpark program uses networked California, Nevada and Florida have passed parking meters to sense the occupancy of each autonomous vehicle legislation. space in real time and communicate it—not just to potential parkers, but to parking managers who can adjust prices based on demand. 5
  • 8. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityIntroduction Y OU might begin by asking the question, “Who says that the current transportation system is being superseded by a new one?” For Yet this does not mean that the future is secure for gasoline-powered automobiles that can carry at least five people and a trunkful most people in the United States, this doesn’t of luggage but usually don’t. There are power- seem to be the case. Americans, for example, ful forces at work changing the average trip take 1.1 billion trips a day, according to the taker’s—and car buyer’s—calculus. federal Bureau of Transportation Statistics, For one thing, the world as a whole is and the vast majority of them are on roads and urbanizing: the United Nations expects that highways: 87 percent of trips are in personal 60 percent of the global population will live vehicles (cars or light trucks) unless you’re in urban areas by 2030, and residential den- just talking about commuters, in which case sity generally means reduced vehicle owner- the figure rises to 91 percent.3 There’s nothing ship. In the United States, nearly 85 percent new there. of Americans are expected to live in urban Nor does it look like the automobile is areas by 2020, with over a quarter of them going to be replaced anytime in the foresee- living in areas with more than five million able future as the “personal vehicle” of choice. people.6 Failure to create smaller, cleaner and As Chris Borroni-Bird, director of Advanced smarter vehicles for dense cities, Borroni-Bird Technology Vehicle Concepts at General observes, “may result in declining automobile Motors (GM), puts it, “No other means of ownership as cities may take further actions transportation offers the same valued combi- to promote bicycle and public transport nation of safety, comfort, convenience, utility usage and to deter usage of conventional and choice of route and schedule.”4 Americans automobiles.”7 go every which way every day, and cars help us There is a robust debate among thinkers get where we want to go when we want to go. focused on the urban future about whether the Whether because of personal choice or com- growth of central cities like Atlanta, Chicago, munity design, the vast majority of Americans and San Francisco represents a permanent consider everything else—at least for their shift away from the auto-dependent suburb daily trips—a second-best option. Between or reflects a mere subset of relatively affluent, 1990 and 2009, personal vehicle use remained college-educated elites who are separating the transportation mode of choice, accounting themselves from the middle-class majority that for 83.4 percent of trips in 2009.5 prefers the suburbs. To at least one venture6
  • 9. capitalist betting on the future, the trends creating an increasingly serious problem forfavor density. “Transportation is becoming businesses that rely on efficient productionan increasingly wasteful and unsatisfactory and deliveries.9 The annual cost of congestionexperience,” says Ryan Popple, a partner at the now exceeds $100 billion.10 And this was allventure capital firm of Kleiner Perkins Caufield in the midst of a recession; the problem will& Byers (KPCB). “If you look at where young only get worse once the economy is workingpeople want to live when they’re coming out of at full steam (see figure 2). Efforts to improveschool, where a lot of businesses are setting up matters by building or widening roads can takeand where real estate has maintained value, it’s years to get into the funding pipeline, mucharound more efficient lifestyles. Time is more less complete.valuable. People want to live closer to wherethey work.”8 This may be because, whether within cit- New transportation landscapeies or in the expansive suburban ring aroundthem, the United States, as well as other coun- W HAT is most striking about the mobil- ity world these days, however, is not that people are being forced to change theirtries, has shown little ability to get a handleon traffic congestion. According to the Texas behavior, but that the enticements to changeTransportation Institute, the average American are growing exponentially. New possibili-commuter spent 34 hours delayed in traffic in ties and opportunities are transforming the2010, up from 14 hours in 1982. Congestion transportation landscape (see figure 3). Theseis becoming a bigger problem outside of range from the technological (the rise of social‘rush hour,’ with about 40 percent of the delay networking and peer-to-peer networking, theoccurring in the mid-day and overnight hours, spread of smartphones, and the developmentFigure 2. The cost of congestion in the United States 41 HOURS 34 HOURS ANNUAL COST OF CONGESTION AVERAGE ANNUAL $175M COMMUTER DELAY $133M $101M 2010 2015 2020Source: 2011 Urban Mobility Report, Texas Transportation Institute 7
  • 10. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility“ If we do nothing, the sheer number of people andcars in urban areas will mean global gridlock. Nowis the time for all of us to be looking at vehicles thesame way we look at smart phones, laptops and tablets: ”as pieces of a much bigger, richer network.—— Bill Ford, executive chairman, Ford Motor Company of connected vehicle technology) to the cul- vehicles’ that access, consume, and create tural (growing willingness—especially among information and share it with drivers, pas- younger Americans but by no means limited sengers, public infrastructure, and machines to them—to engage in so-called “collaborative including other cars.”11 consumption”) to the entrepreneurial (the rec- San Francisco’s SFpark program has ognition that governments alone are unable to installed sensors in the street below thousands solve mobility challenges opens huge opportu- of parking spaces and in garages, collects nities for business). the information, and makes it available to a These changes are promoting new modes Website and app allowing drivers to get real- of transport, from next-generation autono- time data about open spaces. Waze relies on mous, connected vehicles under development, its users to crowdsource road conditions and to an array of new services: renting fractions show real-time information about speed, traf- of a Zipcar’s time; using Avego to share rides fic jams, directions, and even the location of with strangers or GoLoco to share them with speed traps. friends; using peer-to-peer car sharing services The arrival of “big data” is helping traffic like RelayRides or Getaround, and new, on- control centers respond more quickly to acci- demand car services like Uber. dents and backups, while helping individual travelers navigate their moment-by-moment decisions. According to David Hornik, a Digital-age transportation general partner at venture capital firm August T HE most revolutionary changes are com- ing from the encounter of information technology (IT) with... well, you name it. Capital, “Everything is a big-data problem right now. [T]he biggest change is that every device, every vehicle, everybody is manufac- According to Thilo Koslowski, who leads the turing huge amounts of information.”12 Cities automotive practice at the Gartner Group, are beginning to use the digital exhaust gener- “Similar to the way telephones have evolved ated from these devices in powerful new ways. into smartphones, over the next 10 years Boston, for example, developed an app called automobiles will rapidly become ‘connected Street Bump that uses smartphones to identify8
  • 11. Figure 3. Battling urban gridlockThere’s no silver bullet solution to the problem of gridlock—next generationurban transport systems will connect transportation modes, services, andtechnologies together in innovative new ways that pragmatically address aseemingly intractable problem. CAR SHARING RIDE SHARING TELECOMMUTING INCENTIVES(DISCOUNTS, TRAVEL SMART VOUCHERS, ETC.) PARKING P2P CAR RENTAL REAL-TIME TRAFFIC MANAGEMENT INTEGRATED FARE MANAGEMENT ROAD USER PERSONAL TRAVEL CHARGING ASSISTANT APPS AUTONOMOUS BIKE SHARING VEHICLES MULTI-MODAL CONNECTED TRANSPORTATION REAL-TIME TRAVELER VEHICLES SOLUTIONS INFORMATION 9
  • 12. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility The challenge, then, is to harness the extraordinary innovation taking place to make far more efficient use of the existing transportation system. potholes and streets that need repaving as their services, bus and light rail arrival apps, parking owners drive over them. space sensors are all making getting around far There is no aspect of travel that is not being easier than ever before. transformed by IT. Route planning, finding This does not, however, mean that we’ve one’s way while in the car or on foot, collect- figured out how to use these developments ing fares or tolls, congestion and road pricing, to make travel uniformly more enjoyable traffic management, deciding among different or convenient. “Despite the proliferation of transportation options for a given trip, reduc- innovation across [the transportation sector], ing trips through telecommuting—all are holistic solutions are just not coming together evolving at dizzying speed. in a way that works for the user door to door,” Many of the innovations affecting trans- notes Susan Zielinski, managing director of the portation are geared toward giving individu- Sustainable Mobility & Accessibility Research als greater choice in how to get around. GM’s & Transformation (SMART) program at the prototype autonomous electric vehicle, the University of Michigan.14 EN-V, isn’t likely to become the only vehicle The challenge, then, is to harness the people own, Borroni-Bird said, but “maybe extraordinary innovation taking place to make you have a larger vehicle and then for a large far more efficient use of the existing trans- fraction of your trips—say for driving around portation system. Just what that will look like the city center—you own or share a second, is uncertain. But, it is certain to have some small vehicle.”13 Ridesharing services, mapping basic features.10
  • 13. Features of digital-agetransportation systemsG IVEN the pace of innovation and the sheer complexity of transportation systems, itis foolish to venture hard-and-fast predictions to know when the next possible ride is com- ing along. Planners and financial officers need to know how much it costs to operate a givenabout exactly what these systems will look stretch of road or transit route at any givenlike in coming years. But several key themes time of day.are emerging—not so much predictions as In a real sense, information under-extrapolations from current developments. girds mobility. So it shouldn’t be a surprise To take advantage of emerging technolo- that the movement of networked IT intogies, broader social shifts and new business everyday objects—the so-called “Internetmodels, a reenvisioned urban transportation of Things”—creates vast possibilities forsystem is likely to have five key features (see reimagining mobility.figure 4). Networked carsMassively networked The Internet of Things is already transform- ing automobiles.15 Though automakers haveI NFORMATION is as much a part of the basic infrastructure of transportation as roadsand rails are. Travelers need to know where focused much of their attention on connecting cars to existing voice and data networks, the real payoffs will come as vehicles become capa-they are and how to get where they want to go, ble of sensing each other, and their surround-whether on foot, by bike, by car, or by transit. ings and of communicating with their drivers,Traffic managers and drivers want up-to-the each other and the infrastructure around them.minute data on accidents, weather conditions, The true value of these technologicaland traffic flows. Transit passengers want to advances lies not so much in their technology,know when the next bus or train will arrive however, as in their being networked. As Pauland how to get where they’re going once Didier, a manufacturing solutions architect atthey’re dropped at their stop. Ridesharers want Cisco, puts it, “The value of devices (and the 11
  • 14. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityFigure 4. Key features of digital-age transportation systems MASSIVELY USER CENTERED NETWORKED A mobility paradigm Ubiquitous connectivity centered around the user’s throughout the transportation system needs, priorities, data flows between vehicles (V2V), between vehicles and dynamic responses and their surrounding infrastructure (V2I), and between transportation systems and their users INTEGRATED A well-connected system of systems that enables users to easily move from point A to point B regardless of mode, service provider, etc. RELIANT Y ICALL ON NEW DY NAM D MODELS PRICE of road, pricin g use OF PUBLIC-PRIVATE Va riable nd shared ply COLLABORATION ng a sup parki o balance Transportation needs will be met by s t d asset nd deman an increasingly diverse ecosystem of a public, private and nonprofit entities12
  • 15. capabilities they represent) increases exponen- More advanced communication capa-tially when they can communicate with other bilities are not far off. The US Department ofdevices and systems.” Sensing an obstacle in Transportation (USDOT) has been workingthe road, he points out, does no good without for close to a decade to seed V2V technologyletting the driver know the obstacle is there or development with an eye toward improv-signaling the brakes or steering system to take ing safety—trying to define standards, workaction. Even better would be alerting other with automakers and IT firms to craft pilotcars and transportation authorities that there’s programs, and deploy enough models toa problem. “I like to think of it as on-machine, determine whether the technology works asbetween machines and machine-to-cloud (or hoped.19 In August 2012, the USDOT launcheddata center) communication,” Didier says.16 the largest road test of connected vehicle crash The benefits of linking cars’ informa- avoidance technology to date. The Nationaltion—speed, direction, sudden braking—and Highway Traffic Safety Administration will useessentially creating safer, more efficient, and the data collected from the first-of-its-kindmore orderly traffic on the road are signifi- test to assess if and when connected vehiclecant. As executive chairman of Ford Motor safety technology should be incorporated intoCompany Bill Ford describes it, “It will be the the fleet.20closest thing the industry has ever developedto autopilot.” Moreover, he argues, “such ad Benefits of a smarthoc vehicle networks could be integrated with transportation networkother transportation networks, from pedes- While automotive advances are reshapingtrian cross-walk systems to connected bicycles, the driving experience—ultimately, perhaps,making your car a single node in a giant grid turning drivers into de facto passengers—of multi-modal transit intelligence.”17 Ford is opportunities for transformation are arriv-among the automakers developing “adaptive ing on the heels of the explosion of mobilecruise control” (ACC) systems, which automat- technology and especially the rapid spread ofically keep a set distance between a car and the smartphones. In a sense, formerly clear lines—vehicle in front of it. Simulations have found between humans and machines, betweenthat certain traffic jams could be prevented ownership and nonownership, between goodsby harmonizing speeds and smoothing driver and services—blur when information gener-reactions if 20 percent of vehicles on a highway ated and used interchangeably by people andwere equipped with advanced ACC.18 machines becomes ubiquitous.In a sense, formerly clear lines—betweenhumans and machines, between ownership andnonownership, between goods and services—blurwhen information generated and used interchangeablyby people and machines becomes ubiquitous. 13
  • 16. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility New transport models made possible by mobile phones, apps, and smart card technology, like car sharing, are taking a good that sits idle most of the time and turning it into something else. Social media, in particular, creates all sorts director Sean O’Sullivan. “All these approaches of new possibilities. Susan Grant-Muller, direc- are enabled by cheap, connected computers.” tor of research at the Institute for Transport The models enabled by a networked sys- Studies at the University of Leeds, argues that tem have great potential to deliver concrete social media turns travelers both into consum- financial benefits to society. By Deloitte’s ers of information and a particularly useful calculations, doubling the number of rideshare form of sensor. “With mobile technology,” she commuters (which would simply bring the says, “it’s possible for people to build up pro- percentage back up to 1970 levels) and shifting files of our transport behavior.”21 10 percent of lone drivers to car sharing, could New transport models made possible by take nearly 16 million lone drivers off the road mobile phones, apps, and smart card technol- and save 757 million hours annually wasted in ogy, like car sharing, are taking a good that sits congestion. Carbon dioxide emissions would idle most of the time and turning it into some- decline by roughly 2 percent in the United thing else. “You have to think of [the vehicle] States alone. If the government tried to match as a service now,” said Adam Greenfield, these savings by building new public transit, managing director of the boutique design the bill would run over $27 billion.23 firm Urbanscale. “It is not so much a product in space and time but... a proposition that is accessible by multiple people, at different rates Dynamically priced and different times. Eight, ten or twelve people can use that car.”22 T ODAY’S consumers do not bear the true costs of mobility, and the consequences of this are profound. As Cisco’s Andreas Mai and A massively networked system is already creating new ways of maximizing the potential Dirk Schlesinger observe: of existing vehicles and infrastructure. This • We consume as much as we can because we system is the linchpin of the entire “collabora- perceive [road and traffic services] as “free.” tive consumption” movement, allowing Zipcar, • Because the true cost of the inflated demand Getaround, Avego, and their counterparts is not recovered, the public service provider in other countries to operate. “It’s taking the is underfunded. weight of the $8,000 a year we all spend on our • The resulting demand/supply imbalance cars and sharing the costs among the people cripples road infrastructure and significantly actually using them,” says Avego managing inflates the societal cost of mobility.2414
  • 17. In its final report, the National Surface fine-grained in their spatial resolution, and fre-Transportation Infrastructure Financing quent in their adjustment of prices as conges-Commission wrote, “All too often the prices tion levels fluctuate.”28paid by transportation system users aremarkedly less than the costs of providing the Parking lessonstransportation services they use (including While dynamic pricing may still be inpavement repair)—much less the total social the future when it comes to driving, it’s fastcosts (including traffic congestion and pollu- arriving for parking. Donald Shoup, an urbantion).”25 In 2006, the report noted, user fees, planning professor at University of California,including the gas tax, covered just 58 percent Los Angeles, and the author of The High Costof highway funding, while farebox revenues of Free Parking, notes that not only do parkingprovided just 35 percent of transit funding.26 space regulations waste valuable urban land, With the rise of mobile technology and the but at any given moment, an average of 30 per-Internet of Things, new dynamic pricing mech- cent of the cars in congested downtown trafficanisms that would have been inconceivable are actually just looking for a place to park.just a decade ago are now possible—enabling “Free curb parking in a congested city gives apricing based on such variables as time of day, small, temporary benefit to a few drivers whoroad congestion, speed, occupancy, and even happen to be lucky on a particular day, butfuel efficiency and carbon emissions. By pric- it imposes large social costs on everyone elseing different stretches of road or transit routes every day.”29differently—based on up-to-the-minute condi- For that reason, San Francisco is garneringtions—cities can divert drivers and passengers great attention for its SFpark program, whichto cheaper routes, as well as collect payment has installed networked meters that can sensefor what it actually costs to maintain a roadway the occupancy of each space in real time andor system. communicate it—not just to potential park- In their book Reinventing the Automobile, ers, but to parking managers who can adjustWilliam Mitchell, Chris Borroni-Bird and prices based on the overall occupancy of aLawrence Burns lay out the rationale for given block and aim to set a price that keepsdynamic pricing: “Clear, rational, responsive one or two spaces free on each block. As Shouppricing of trips provides a sound basis for both writes, “SFpark embodies two importantindividual decision making and the optimiza- ideas. The first is that you cannot set the righttion of overall system behavior for society as a price for curb parking without observing thewhole. From a driver’s perspective, it makes the occupancy.... The second is that small changestotal costs of trips accurately and clearly evi- in parking prices and location choices candent and enables well-informed choices among lead to big improvements in transportationalternative trip departure times, routes, and efficiency.”30destinations. From an urban systems perspec-tive, it enables the effective management byprice of available urban space and infrastruc- User centered Tture while providing tools for achieving social HERE’S a reason the automobile is asequity and other policy objectives.”27 popular as it is: It puts the user’s needs at The only way to do this, though, is to use the center of a trip. You don’t have to worryemerging technology. Existing systems, they about a transit agency’s schedules, whetherpoint out, adjust prices only at relatively long you’ll get a seat, whether it’s raining or whetherintervals and tend to cover only portions (in most cases) you can actually get to yourof a road network, thus displacing traffic to destination. For that comfort and convenience,untolled roads. The goal, they write, “is to most Americans are willing to put up with themake congestion pricing systems citywide, 15
  • 18. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility The technological developments of the past couple of decades offer the prospect of a very different paradigm—mobility centered around the user. inconveniences of traffic, finding parking, and it, “We should not modify people’s behavior– the cost of gasoline. the system should be able to accommodate There’s another reason the car is so popu- the person. It needs to provide choices for the lar: It gives its user the widest-seeming set user.” Others point out that one purpose of of options within the existing transportation dynamic pricing is, in fact, to encourage users system. At the moment, transport solutions to modify their behavior: to walk or take tran- are designed, developed, and controlled by sit when streets are congested, to park farther providers and government agencies, and users away from their destination at times when the slot themselves into that system. Where roads block it’s on is heavily used, or to wait an extra go, when trains run, where metro stops are half hour before using rail transit. located, which bus routes get the most frequent Still, the overall system needs to provide service—all impose constraints on the choices choices that not only permit everything that users can make. today’s system permits, but that improve on it, whether it’s a trip to the grocery store or More choices to visit family or the daily commute. It needs The technological developments of the to meet the needs of an aging population (it’s past couple of decades offer the prospect of a hard to imagine the baby boom generation set- very different paradigm—mobility centered tling for being shut-ins or relying on the occa- around the user. According to Buzzcar and sional paratransit ride), and of the disabled, of Zipcar founder Robin Chase, “The combina- the regular commuter traveling a fixed route tion of the Internet, which holds the world’s at the same time every day, of people running knowledge; wireless, which gives us ubiquitous errands or rushing to a last-minute meeting, of and low-cost access to it; and smartphones pedestrians and bicyclists, of people who like that make our interfaces portable and cheap, is owning their own vehicles, and of people who transformational.”31 wouldn’t be caught dead owning a car. In other Some transportation experts take a dim words, it needs to answer to the world as it is. view of forcing users to adapt to the system’s Travel behavior is dynamic and multifaceted, needs, rather than the other way around. As and the provision of more choices that actually Marcus Bowman, founder of 3G Mobility puts entice people—rather than forcing them into16
  • 19. one mode or another—ought to lead to a more Transportation data needs to be provided inbalanced, optimally used system overall. an open format, up to the minute, and readily “We must have a wide range of options in accessible to anyone who needs it.transportation,” says Chase, “because people gofrom being 0 years old to being 90; they havedifferent amounts of money, different amounts Integratedof ability to move, different amounts of inde-pendence, different amounts of income. How I F you live in an urban area, here’s where you want the system to end up: You have got a mobile device, and it knows where youyou move a 2-year-old is not how you move a28-year-old, or a 48-year-old with children. ... are because it’s location aware. So you enterTo answer transportation issues we really, truly where you want to go and it gives you all yourdo need to have a variety of possibilities.”32 options, based on what’s going on right now: it knows the best route, the existing trafficReal-time information conditions, how much parking is availableand open data close by to where you’re going, how the buses and trains are running, where the closest bike Making a dynamic, multi-modal transpor- shares, Zipcar spots, and peer-to-peer cartation system possible shares are located,requires a fundamental and when someonechange in who controlsinformation and how The goal is clear: in your ridesharing network is going toit is shared. Withoutcomprehensive infor- Transportation data be coming by. And it can tell you whatmation at their finger-tips—whether it involves needs to be provided the best option is right now: Trafficpublic or privateservices—transportation in an open format, is backed up, and there’s a breakdownusers can’t make the bestchoices for travel. So to up to the minute, and on the light rail line you would need, butunderstand their choicesand make quick deci- readily accessible to there’s a bike shar- ing station threesions, users need accessto freely shared, up-to- anyone who needs it. blocks away from you, so right nowthe-minute information. that’s your best bet On the roads, this is (see figure 6). Youprecisely what companies such as INRIX and walk over, wave your credit card or smart-TomTom aim to provide: real-time information phone over a reader, and you’re on your way.for subscribers about current traffic conditions. It’s a delightful prospect—and no longerAnd within cities, the “open data” movement is as impossible as it might have seemed fivepressing public transit agencies to make their years freely available in the widely used General One vision of how to get there has beenTransit Feed Specification (GTFS) format so developed by RideAmigos Corp, whichthat developers can build route, schedule, and has developed the virtual Century Cityother applications on top of it. Success has Transportation Management Organizationbeen mixed, as City-Go-Round, a website that (CCTMO) in Los Angeles. Its dashboardprovides access to “useful” transit apps, makes allows users to compare alternatives—transit,clear: Only 220 out of 844 transit agencies in ridesharing, bicycling, walking—for cost, time,the United States have open data, though more distance, and carbon dioxide output; tracksare being added regularly.33 The goal is clear: 17
  • 20. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityFigure 6. Illustrative multi-modal commuter dashboard Commute Planner 2,350 MY TOTAL POINTS TRIP: DAY: CULVER CITY to DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES TIME: MY RANK #8 WEEKDAY 9:00AM POINTS NEEDED FOR NEXT AWARD 150 TRIP DASHBOARD TIME 4.1 hrs 54 mins 27 mins 29 mins 48 mins COST free free $6.85 $1.50 $1.50 2 shared rides MILES 10.2 mi 10.5 mi 11.0 mi 9.1 mi 9.5 mi available LBS CO2 0.0 lbs 0.0 lbs 9.1 lbs 2.6 lbs 5.3 lbs POINTS 50 35 0 25 20 20 DIRECTIONS MAP POINTS OF INTEREST 1. Start out going northeast on 0.44 mi Bike racks Culver Blvd. toward Lafayette Pl. Bicycle shop/repair 2. Turn right onto Venice Blvd. 2.78 mi Shower facilities 3. Keep right at the fork to 0.68 mi METRO Stops continue on Venice Blvd. Park-n-rides 4. Turn slight right onto Lomita St. 0.32 mi Zipcar 5. Turn left onto West Blvd. 0.25 mi GetThere commutes; provides options for buying transit transition from one system to the next is passes; lists bike rack locations and shower painless. According to SMART’s Zielinski, facilities; matches carpools and vanpools “Transportation is not simply one mode that within a user’s company or throughout the moves a person or a good from A to B. It is community; and provides business listings, much more interesting and useful than that. weather, traffic alerts, and so on.34 It is a system, or rather a ‘system of systems’ connecting modes, services, technologies and Connected system of systems designs according to the best option for the The world is catching up to the notion that purpose.”35 the centerpiece of a transportation network This is hardly far-fetched, given how ubiq- is the person or good that has to be moved, uitous this kind of connectivity has become not the idiosyncratic needs of the organiza- in our lives. Take banking and retail, for tion that runs a particular mode of travel. example. As former IBM chairman and CEO Making movement as easy as possible means Sam Palmisano, points out, “We take it for integrating a range of systems so that the granted that we can transfer funds and make18
  • 21. payments among institutions. …We take it for ordinary users to travel easily, fully aware ofgranted that we can use the same payment and their options.billing systems, regardless of store, website or In other words, says Georgia Institute ofindustry. All these systems have standards and Technology assistant engineering professorinterfaces that permit information to flow.”36 Kari Watkins, who helped create the Seattle- Transportation, he argues, isn’t even close. area transit app OneBusAway as a graduateThe connections simply don’t exist among student, “You need the underlying infrastruc-vehicles and “pathways,” government agencies, ture where you’re measuring all these things;regulators, providers, and carriers, and to the you need agencies that are forward-thinkinggoods and people being moved.”37 enough to share this data; and then you need folks who are innovative enough to figure outTotal information awareness how to develop the applications that lay on Establishing a well-connected system of top of each other, so that we can get a systemsystems will take work. It means making sure where the focus really is on mobility itself andthat a number of capabilities are in place: taking care of transportation customers.”38Roadways, parking spaces, cars and tran-sit vehicles are equipped with sensors. Ride Activating network effectsshare, car share and bike share systems know requires system coordinationtheir assets’ availability. Payment systems are The development of discrete systems is onlyintegrated so that regardless of whether you’re a first step; it is their integration and spreadusing a bicycle, taking a subway, or paying that will produce real benefits. As Stephenroad tolls in three different states, you can do Ezell of the Information Technology andso electronically using just a single card or Innovation Foundation points out, “If a regiondevice. And the agencies—public or private— or state makes all its roadways intelligent withthat run the various systems make their data real-time traffic data, such efforts do little goodavailable so that others can use that data to if motorists do not have telematics in theirbuild the applications that make it possible for vehicles (or on mobile phones) to receive and act on that information.” Similarly, a collection“ Transportation is not simply one mode that moves a person or a good from A to B. It is much more interesting and useful than that. It is a system, or rather a ‘system of systems’ connecting modes, services, technologies and ” designs according to the best option for the purpose. —— Susan Zielinski, managing director, SMART, University of Michigan 19
  • 22. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility“ We’re focused on vehicle throughput, but we haveto care about people throughput. We don’t look atthis big mobility picture and how can we get people ”around the entire community in a better way.—— Kari Watkins, assistant professor, Georgia Institute of Technology of independent electronic toll collection Interestingly, you can see the outlines of an systems is far less efficient or convenient for answer in the status quo. travelers than one that covers jurisdictions all The assumption about most roads, bridges, across the country. “Thus,” Ezell says, “many and other auto-related infrastructure in the intelligent transportation systems are subject United States, has always been that they to network effect and scale challenges, thus are a public good, and therefore should be requiring extensive system coordination.”39 funded partially by users through gasoline The problem is not just that such coordina- taxes and tolls, and partially through public tion and integration don’t yet exist but also that subsidies ultimately paid by the general tax it is unclear whether the organizations cur- base. Financing has been largely provided by rently overseeing the system of transportation the private sector in the bond markets. But in systems in the United States or other countries recent years, as the gap between available pub- know how to make it happen. “We’re focused lic funds and infrastructure needs has grown on vehicle throughput, but we have to care ever wider, another model has taken hold: about people throughput,” says Watkins. “We the public-private partnership, or PPP, which don’t look at this big mobility picture and how involves the use of private sector equity and can we get people around the entire commu- risk sharing. This has been the force behind nity in a better way.”40 the creation of high-occupancy toll lanes near Fort Lauderdale, Florida; the new management of the Indiana Toll Road (a deal in which the Reliant on new models of Cintra-Macquarie venture is paying the state public-private collaboration $3.8 billion to lease the road over 75 years); T HE hardest question when looking at the future of transportation, of course, is how change is going to be organized and paid for. and the creation of HOT lanes in the DC sub- urbs of northern Virginia. If a new transportation system is going to come into being, government will neither be20
  • 23. able to fully fund it nor take primary responsi- expanded the definition of carpool projects inbility for it at current taxing or toll levels; it is 2012 to include real-time ridesharing.having enough trouble just keeping up with the ITNAmerica, a not-for-profit, has devel-status quo. Moreover, the sheer complexity of oped an innovative business and paymenta transportation system that works for every- model geared toward improving mobility forone—unlike the current system—argues that seniors, regardless of their income. Similarly, amany players will have to be involved. small constellation of firms—TomTom, INRIX, One way that government can prime the Garmin and others—are exploring differ-private sector’s creative pump is through chal- ent ways of guiding and informing drivers,lenges that arrive at transportation solutions whether through dedicated dashboard deviceswithout calling for heavy public spending on or smartphone apps or the new data hubsresearch and development. The USDOT has being installed in cars. Different aspects ofa handful of such challenges, though only mobility, in other words, are generating theirone—asking for innovative uses for DSRC own “ecosystems” of players.wireless technology—has really tackled a core Venture capitalist Ryan Popple and hismobility issue.41 firm, KPCB, got into transportation because they saw a similarity to a field they had beenThe new transportation ecosystem investing in—smart grids and renewable A transportation system that works for energy. “As we spent time in those sectors andeveryone must be complex and fine-grained realized how much waste was in the basic grid,at multiple levels—which means that there we found some great software and hardwareare a multitude of potential niches for private- companies that were really the IT of the grid,”sector involvement. In almost every aspect of Popple says. “The more time we spent aroundtransportation—from electrification of cars the [transportation] system we realized theand up-to-the-minute information for drivers paybacks and the return-on-investmentto ways of reducing the “wasted capacity” of around just eliminating waste were huge. Weempty seats and improving the experience of like the comparison of finding the smart-gridpublic transit passengers—new, private efforts companies of the highway and roads system.”43are pouring into the field. There is a sense of And at this particular moment, he believes, thegreat entrepreneurial possibility in addressing field is wide open—or as he puts it, “We thinkthe myriad problems created by the current tilt there are lots of ‘ands’ and fewer ‘ors’ in thetoward the single-occupancy vehicle model. market.” Take just one small slice of the emerg- Which is why there is also great oppor-ing transportation market: ridesharing. tunity for the public and private sectors to“Whatever’s going to happen, there’s a whole collaborate—for each to help the other wherebunch of players who need to work together appropriate. The US federal government,in helping these technologies be adopted through the DOT’s Research and Innovativeby the world,” says Avego managing direc- Technology Administration, has already beentor O’Sullivan. His company happens to be a significant player in promoting V2V andfocused on the daily commute. Carpooling. V2I technology, while the Federal Highwayorg, which lets drivers offer up their empty Administration has seeded everything fromseats online and passengers book them much new toll highways and rail corridors to busthe same way they would a train ticket, already rapid transit projects and ridesharing pilothas 3.6 million members.42 There are others programs around the country.that appeal specifically to students on college There are clear payoffs to cooperationcampuses, or to people looking for intercity between the public sector and a company liketransportation. For its part, the US Congress Avego, which has worked with local govern- ments and the federal government to launch 21
  • 24. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility “ We are making the private car part ” of the public transit network. —— Sean O’Sullivan, managing director, Avego pilot ridesharing initiatives around Seattle, network. The single car becomes a public/ in northern Virginia and elsewhere. Avego microprivate partnership where the consumer benefits from the knowledge it gains at each is making their asset, empty seats, usable.”44 iteration of its rideshare efforts, as well as from Public transit agencies have for the most government’s help in building a critical mass part embraced this notion, O’Sullivan says, of drivers and passengers—a crucial element because rush hour is their most expensive time of success in ridesharing. The public sector, period—so adding commute capacity without in turn, gets a chance to explore a new way of adding buses or trains helps them keep their looking at “public” transit. costs down. The public-private partnership As Avego’s Sean O’Sullivan explains, “The can also be more explicitly visible, as in a average American commutes 17 miles from pilot project funded by the Federal Highway their home to work. If we automatically make Administration and the Virginia Department available stops along that route... it makes it of Transportation, and managed by the very convenient for people traveling along Northern Virginia Regional Commission, to the road as they normally do to just let the recruit Department of Defense personnel to computer tell them to pull over in 500 meters, use Avego’s ridesharing app in an effort to cut there’s somebody waiting for a ride. We are down congestion along Northern Virginia making the private car part of the public transit commuting corridors.22
  • 25. Three scenarios fordigital-age transportationS O what do these five features—massively networked, dynamically priced, user Scenario 1: The Internet of carscentered, integrated, and developed by bothpublic and private players—add up to? It may I F you were plucked from 1912 and set down on a city sidewalk today, you’d know immediately what you saw driving past in thebe a fool’s game to make confident and detailed streets. The cars might not look like the Metzpredictions about the future of urban mobil- Runabouts and Brush roadsters of your day,ity, but it’s not so hard to extrapolate from but there’d be no doubt they were cars.current trends. As GM’s Chris Borroni-Bird notes, “The What follows are less alternative scenarios same DNA is in today’s autos as in the autosthan parallel ways of grouping developing of 100 years ago.” They have four wheels,trends. Indeed, the future is likely to con- an engine in front with a passenger com-tain elements of all three: widely connected partment behind, an internal combustionvehicles, or “the Internet of cars”; pricing that engine fueled by petroleum, mechanicalaligns supply with demand; and the spread of controls that rely on a driver, and drivers whosocial networking into transportation decision- are unconnected to other drivers and themaking (see figures 7-9). How these ultimately surrounding infrastructure.take shape will depend on the complicated Now, Borroni-Bird points out, all this isinterplay of a range of players—the public sec- changing. Power sources are diversifying totor, manufacturers, entrepreneurs, and a host include biofuels, electricity, and hydrogen fuelof others—and how they go about resolving cells. Cars can be controlled electronicallythe issues that each “scenario” presents.Figure 7. The future of urban mobility: Scenario 1THE INTERNET OF CARS 1 4 You are connected to everything you need while you travel in a car personalized for you You call your (autonomous driving) car to pick you up 5 You are dropped off at the doorstep and the car parks itself2 You enter your destination and are dynamically routed to work based on traffic flows through the system 3 Your car travels down an automated roadway with platooned vehicles 23
  • 26. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility and his company and others—most notably car-specific services: GM’s OnStar division Google, along with Massachusetts Institute offers “concierge” services and roadside assis- of Technology’s CityCar effort—are work- tance for drivers; the Mercedes-Benz mbrace ing on the suite of capabilities that would app allows remote doorlocking and services allow cars to drive themselves. As revolu- such as driving directions and restaurant list- tionary as all this may be, though, perhaps ings through the navigation system; Nissan’s the most game-changing possibilities lie CARWINGS allows electric-vehicle drivers to in the fact that cars are about to join the control functions remotely. information superhighway. But the possibilities inherent in vehicles “It is no longer enough to sell personal connected to each other, to the infrastruc- transportation,” write Cisco’s Andreas Mai and ture around them, and to data streams go far Dirk Schlesinger. “People want a personalized beyond entertainment, navigation, and road- driving experience that keeps them connected side assistance. Cars might automatically scan to everything that is important to them— the Web, for instance, for information about friends, information, music, maps, schedules, problems ahead or parking spaces at one’s des- and more. Connected cars could do for the tination and suggest alternative routes or even automotive industry what smartphones did for switching to a different mode of travel if traffic the phone industry.”45 is too heavy.“ You have a tweet from…your car Connected cars could do Toyota has joined forces with to allow its electric vehicles and for the automotive industry plug-in hybrids to communicate with their owners—“Hey, your battery needs recharg- what smartphones did for ing”—through Twitter and other social net- ” working tools. Car sharing, more efficient fleet the phone industry. 46 management, the capture of real-time traffic data—all are made possible by connected vehi- —— Andreas Mai and Dirk Schlesinger, Cisco cles. So, too, is what GM calls “a sophisticated, integrated, intelligent transportation system that dynamically manages large transportation The market has recognized this. According flows using the latest communications and to a recent report by Globis Consulting, computer controls.”48 “Vehicles are the last major market for con- nectivity, now that homes and businesses are Automated driving linked to the Internet.”47 Finally, of course, there is the possibility of Beyond infotainment the “automated roadway,” platooned vehicles and, when combined with advances in sensing At the moment, much of the action is hap- technology, fully autonomous driving—all of pening piecemeal, and much is focused on which, their supporters argue, will make driv- infotainment. Cell phone calls can be handled ing safer, more convenient, less wasteful, and through the audio system; some manufacturers more efficient. “It may not be obvious,” says are using embedded modules to connect cars Borroni-Bird, “but platooned vehicles might to mobile phone and data networks; others even match or exceed the passenger through- are making it possible to connect to social put of rapid transit bus systems.”49 networking sites, Internet radio, and the Web in general. Still, some firms have focused on24
  • 27. The promise of connected vehicles: This, say Cisco’s Andreas Mai and DirkA focus on people, not cars Schlesinger, would save 25 percent of the one-time hardware and software costs, and Ubiquitous connectivity will almost cer- another 40 percent each year of operatingtainly speed the day when cars are seen as just costs.51 Moreover, they believe that a net-one piece of the larger transportation system, worked vehicle would then open the door to anot the standalone vehicle of choice they are set of capabilities that “could create an annualnow. In other words, transportation will evolve benefit pool of $1,400 for each connectedbeyond selling cars to integrating cars into a vehicle.” Such benefits might include paymentsvehicle-to-grid system. to traffic-guidance and navigation services, One example of this will be the degree to emergency services, and insurance companieswhich rideshares and peer-to-peer car shares able to charge based on miles driven and loca-become part of a “public” transport system, in tion; lower costs to service automobiles; costessence weaving what had been private space savings to users from spending less time stuckinto the transport options that are publicly in traffic and possibly lower fuel and insuranceavailable at any given moment. Moreover, costs; and lower costs to society from fewerBorroni-Bird notes that vehicle connectivity accidents and lower traffic and toll operation“facilitates communication with the public costs.52 If their calculation is right, unlockingtransport system so that drivers could be that annual benefit pool will be a key to fund-made aware of rapidly changing schedules, for ing the “Internet of cars.”example, or make seamless plans for intermo- There is no question that both the privatedal transport while traveling.”50 and public spheres are headed in that direc- All this carries with it the implication that tion. The USDOT’s Research and Innovativeas vehicles connect to the larger transportation Technology Administration (RITA) and itsecosystem, make their drivers more aware of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)alternatives, and induce industry and govern- research program have been funding researchment to think more systemically, the users of since 2004 in a range of arenas: developing sys-cars, rather than the cars themselves, will come tems that can deliver up-to-the minute weatherto be at the center of transportation think- and road condition information; collisioning. Or to use Kari Watkins’s formulation, avoidance systems; integrated safety systems;the system will be more open to focusing on and a range of connected-vehicle applica-people throughput, rather than simply vehicle tions.53 RITA’s Connected Vehicle Core Systemthroughput—on getting users from their multi- project is focusing on wireless communicationstude of points A to their profusion of points B among pretty much everything that moveswithout giving primacy to any particular mode along and beside a roadway—cars, trucks,of travel. transit, pedestrians, cyclists—linking them to each other and to the infrastructure.54How do we get there? Private sector initiatives, too, are prolif-1. Combine vehicle communications erating. Vehicle manufacturers, of course,in single platform are heavily invested both in remaking their The road to that point, however, is long. products’ basic DNA and in adding connectiv-To begin with, a car these days may be fully ity. Moreover, through the Car Connectivityconnected, but only because of a plethora Consortium (CCC), leading automotiveof devices for telematics, radio, Wi-Fi, toll companies are working closely with mobilepaying and so on. It makes far more sense communications and consumer electronicsto combine vehicles’ communications into a companies to develop global standards forsingle platform. smartphone in-car connectivity. Globis’s Barrie Kirk also expects the mobile carrier industry, 25
  • 28. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility app developers, and content providers to play All this makes the CCC’s willingness to significant roles—along with universities, work on open standards—and especially on which as he points out are developing network the Terminal Mode standard—significant. As protocols for vehicle and sensor networks, Andrew Updegrove, a Boston attorney special- as well as ways of diagnosing vehicle mal- izing in high-tech standard setting, noted after functions and transmitting that data to the the announcement of CCC’s founding, car navigation system.55 manufacturers seem to have bought into the Of course, there are a host of issues that the notion that it’s easier to let mobile devices bear market will have to sort out as plans develop. the burden of adapting to changing technology. Will consumers prefer wireless embedded in “True,” he wrote, “the automotive manufactur- the car—which allows communication with ers have had to give up any remaining hopes the car even when the driver and their smart- of tying customers to them via proprietary phone are elsewhere, but which might also be telematic systems, but customers weren’t going outdated within a couple of years—or a way of to buy into that kind of world anyway—they linking their smartphones to in-car displays? simply wouldn’t have bought proprietary Nokia and other providers are working on “ter- vendor options and services—and perhaps the minal mode” standards, under which “mobile cars that offered them—at all. At the end of the devices could be tightly connected with in-car day, the automotive industry appears to have systems such as digital displays, steering wheel decided to take the classic standards route of buttons, rotary knobs, and car audio systems. adopting a standardized platform, and then Consumers could use a mobile device via the preparing to compete on value-added features car controls, as if the device and its apps were and services (some of the latter doubtless on a integrated into the car itself.”56 paid subscription basis).”57 There are other questions, too: What kind Other standards efforts are also underway of software—apps or Web-based access—will at the International Standards Organization, developers use? What role will the cloud play? which has a committee responsible for intel- What role will the insurance industry play, ligent transport systems. Meanwhile, US given its interest in standardized usage data— European, and Japanese auto manufacturers as well as in the potentially costly matter of and government officials have also met to talk distracted driving? about cooperating on standards for connected- vehicle technology. 2. Progress connectivity standards But cooperative efforts do not always There are also specific efforts around translate quickly into concrete progress. On connectivity standards—which are already the automakers’ side, interoperability standards underway—that will have to bear fruit. Avego’s for vehicle-to-whatever communications have Sean O’Sullivan points out that the key to proceeded far enough that some European making transit information readily available manufacturers plan to include the capability in many cities was the development of shared in their 2015 models, while Thinking Highways standards for information. Google’s collabora- associate editor Richard Bishop expects to see tion with TriMet (based in Portland, Oregon) it in US models by 2018. But that may just be has produced the open GTFS standard, which for vehicle to vehicle. While infrastructure may serve as a basis for a broader standard. providers are also working on cooperative Google promulgated the standard, urban tran- systems—especially in Europe—it is far from sit agencies wrote their data to conform with certain that they will be ready anytime in the it, and a small army of college students learned near future. Infrastructure-focused ITS initia- how to mine the data and get it to anyone with tives, Bishop says, tend to take far longer than a smartphone. their optimistic boosters anticipate. “I expect26
  • 29. it will occur much slower than anyone on the tracked by some “Big Brother” agency, whethervehicle side would prefer,” he argues.58 it’s public or private.3. Address security There remain a host of other issues to Scenario 2: Dynamic pricingaddress. Clearly, for instance, security will bevital to every aspect of the system. A hackedconnected-car network would create chaos. T HE world is moving inexorably toward the notion that goods and especially services need not be priced statically. Airlines andAs GigaOM blogger Kevin Fitchard points hotels, of course, have been pricing seats andout, “Such networks aren’t just transmitting rooms dynamically for years. Electric utilitiesinformation, they’re acting on it. Introducing have been installing smart meters that will,false vehicle data into the stream could cause among other things, allow them to respond toour cars to respond to phantoms, swerving to changing demand by changing prices.avoid vehicles that aren’t there and braking for Transportation stands on a similar frontier,gridlock that doesn’t exist.”59 Or as one German made possible by the spread of mobile tech-academic says, “Most people would rather have nology, location-based services, and “contact-malicious software running on their laptop less” payment systems.61 These will ultimatelythan inside their car braking system.”60 allow for two key values to be embedded in transportation pricing:4. Resolve privacy issues • Users pay a more direct portion of the Issues related to privacy will also need to actual costs of the services and modesbe resolved. While it’s one thing for electronic they use.loops embedded in highways to transmitanonymous information to monitors about • Prices respond to demand tovehicle numbers, speed, and so on, when vehi- increase the overall efficiency of thecles themselves start transmitting that data, transportation system.that’s another matter. As we see later, there is The benefits, as outlined earlier in thegreat public resistance to the prospect of being features of digital-age transportation systemsFigure 8. The future of urban mobility: Scenario 2DYNAMIC PRICING 7:00 a.m. 12:30 p.m. 6:00 p.m. 10:00 p.m. ROUTE FINDER PARK ASSIST TRAVEL TRACKER Open parking JUNE 15TH 16 miles meters near 40 minutes destination AUTO $18 $0 PARKING $19 12 miles 25 minutes ONE-WAY FARE TRANSIT $6 $10 toll Mobile Payment INSURANCE $2 PAY TOLL Accepted PAY METER You are headed to You have a few At 6 o’clock, you head At the end of the day, your work and have an errands to run over to a bustling part of mobility cost tracker app important meeting lunch and decide to town to meet an old provides an itemized breakdown that you cannot be take the metro. friend for dinner and of the costs incurred for vehicle late for, so you decide are directed to a trips (location, time of day, to take the quicker, parking spot just steps number of passengers), transit more expensive route. from the restaurant. costs, parking costs, and a mileage based insurance cost 27
  • 30. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility Real-time reporting of traffic conditions and predictive forecasting should make it possible for drivers to be able to choose between the lowest cost and the quickest routes to their destination, with full knowledge both of their cost and travel time. section, would run throughout the system. for drivers to be able to choose between the Drivers and passengers would get clear signals lowest cost and the quickest routes to their about the cost of a given choice, allowing them destination, with full knowledge both of their to make decisions about their timing, route, cost and travel time. and mode of travel that take into account But there’s an additional consideration: both their own needs and the overall system’s. “Real-world” pricing will also depend on Transportation managers and providers would technological advances that make it possible be able to set prices according to availability, for providers to understand their custom- cost, congestion, demand, the desire to attract ers’ behavior, price accordingly, and facilitate customers, and other considerations. Ideally, switching from mode to mode. In other words, the result would be to optimize the efficiency it should be a simple matter to use a tolled of the entire transportation system, lessen- roadway and then park, switch to rapid transit, ing the peaks and valleys for everything from and hop in a shared ride to your destination. seats on a bus to use of a downtown street to parking in the most popular shopping and How do we get there? entertainment districts. 1. Promote wireless payments Making trade-offs explicit Great strides are being made on the techni- cal front. VeriFone is experimenting with In the end, pricing mechanisms for the contactless payment cards on bus systems in users of transportation services—in other Turkey. Austria’s WESTbahn is working to words, for drivers, parkers, transit passengers, make it possible for travelers with smartphones bike-share and rideshare users, among oth- enabled with near field communication (NFC) ers—should provide clear signals about the simply to tap their devices on a conductor-held range of options they might consider, using iPad to make their payment. China Telecom new technologies to make the trade-offs read- integrated its mobile network with Beijing’s ily apparent. If a subway system is straining transport cards, allowing commuters to simply under the load of rush-hour passengers right swipe their mobile phones to make bus and now, you want to make sure that potential pas- subway fare payments.62 In the United States, sengers know that the amount they pay will be New Jersey Transit is working with Google to lower if they just wait a half hour—or take the bring the wireless Google Wallet payment sys- bus instead. Drivers using the relatively scarce tem to its routes. The Utah Transit Authority, and expensive space of a downtown street at which has been a pioneer in contactless pay- rush hour should know both the cost and the ment, is moving toward using both Google relative price and trip time of alternatives. Wallet and Isis, a rival NFC-based application. Real-time reporting of traffic conditions and Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation predictive forecasting should make it possible28
  • 31. Authority is working to introduce its own con- the top ten U.S. insurance companies nowtactless payment system.63 offer usage-based plans.67 The point in all this The benefits to users in terms of ease of use is not to discourage driving. Rather, the goalare obvious, but the benefits to transit agen- for insurance companies is to more accuratelycies and their planners may be even greater. price their services, recognizing that previous“Transit agencies need to understand how payment models for insurance were essentiallyriders are using the system. Right now, it’s hard blunt tell where riders are going—you can count PAYD insurance may, however, havethem, but it’s hard to track a full linked trip,” another side effect: accustoming drivers to theUtah Transit’s Gerry Carpenter said. “With idea of reporting their mileage. According toNFC tapping, each customer has a unique Robert Atkinson, president of the Informationidentifier— either an ID or credit card—which Technology & Innovation Foundation, “Peopleenables us to tell that an individual customer will get marginally used to the notion of payingwent from point A to point B and arrived at by the mile. Then it’s less of a big emotionalpoint C, all without violating their privacy.”64 or intellectual shift.”68 Just as people using theThis capability will, in turn, allow transit agen- telephone once limited their long-distancecies to begin introducing more dynamic pric- calls to nights and weekends to take advan-ing for their services. tage of lower rates, and airline passengers understand that flying on Fridays and Sundays2. Explore new payment models will cost them more than flying on a Tuesday Taking a new approach to the issue, the or Saturday, greater price transparency willinsurance industry and state regulators are undoubtedly lead drivers and other transporta-exploring how to link cars’ actual use to the tion users to change their behavior.premiums their owners pay. “Pay as you drive”(PAYD) insurance, or usage-based insurance, 3. Anticipate resistancehas been around for a decade, but insur- This is an issue, because there is certain toance companies have only recently amassed be resistance to some aspects of dynamic pric-enough data to accurately price risk based on ing. While there is growing acceptance of thedriver behavior. Progressive Insurance’s PAYD idea of dynamic pricing for parking, drivingprogram, Snapshot, uses a small on-board may be another matter. As Ken Laberteaux,device to measure when drivers use their car, senior principal research scientist at Toyotahow far they drive, and how often or hard they Research Institute of North America, notes,brake, and offers drivers discounts based on “Any change will look like a stick, rather than athe data gathered by the device.66 The preva- carrot, because the current cost of transporta-lence of PAYD plans is increasing. Eight of tion for each user is so low.”MINNESOTA EXPERIMENTSpurred by the harsh reality that as fuel consumption drops, the gasoline tax will be even less reliable afunding source for infrastructure than it is now, states are interested in finding ways of charging driversfor miles driven. Minnesota’s DOT, working with Battelle, is testing a mileage-based user fee that relieson smartphones programmed with a GPS application that allows motorists to submit information.The idea, says Battelle’s Rob Zimmer, is to keep the strategy as simple as possible. “We hope todemonstrate that a mileage-based user fee could be successfully deployed using infrastructure that’savailable right now. Consumers are already carrying smartphones with them in their vehicles. There’sno need for a state to deploy a million-dollar system to do this. We already have the computers in carstoday.”65 The effort, which began in 2011, is aimed at finding ways to reduce the state’s reliance onthe gasoline tax—from which proceeds have been shrinking—as a way to fund roads and highways. 29
  • 32. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility“ 4. Obtain consensus on what the market in transportation should look like Any change will look Finally, there is a larger question that will need to be settled. While there may be overalllike a stick, rather than a agreement about the need for transportation users to pay a higher portion of the cost ofcarrot, because the current what they use, there is less agreement about the next step. Should each service or mode—gov-cost of transportation for ernment-owned or privately-tolled roads, for ” example, versus transit versus rideshares—sim-each user is so low. ply set prices without regard to any concerns but their own? In other words, should there—— Ken Laberteaux, senior principal research scientist,Toyota Research Institute of North America be an entirely free and potentially competitive market in transportation? Or should the pric- ing of different modes also reflect community or social benefits—so that if, say, you make Indeed, according to a survey commis- choices in your commute that produce an envi- sioned by the task force studying Minnesota’s ronmental or congestion benefit, you get cred- mileage-based user fee (MBUF), “Minnesotans ited for that choice in some way? If so, who tended to be unfavorable toward an MBUF determines what counts as a “benefit” and what system that charges differential rates based on as a “detriment” or “negative externality”? How time of day, level of congestion, [and] loca- do you make sure that in setting prices, the tion of driving.”69 Since those are precisely the overall impacts get weighed: the contribution variables most likely to come into play in any to economic vitality that a robust road network dynamic road pricing scheme, the politics of and the freedom to drive provide, for instance, instituting such a scheme could get sticky. A versus the economic cost of congestion? And set of focus groups conducted by the Texas if we’re going to reap the greatest benefits of Transportation Institute (TTI) found great dynamic pricing, shouldn’t operators of each skepticism about the need to switch from the mode be in constant touch with each other— gas tax to user fees and cynicism about govern- along with the banking sector—so that they ment’s ability to administer fees effectively can all adjust pricing according to the realities and fairly.70 of the entire system at any given moment? PRIVACY: A BARRIER As the TTI’s focus-group members in the United States point out, privacy will also become an issue. Many cellphone users are happy to have their locations tracked as long as the service is useful to them alone. But there is great resistance to the notion that the government or private companies should also be able to hold onto and use that data. When a story broke last year about companies collecting location data from smartphones without users’ knowledge, the result was hearings on Capitol Hill and the introduction of several bills to strengthen privacy protections for location data— both from cars and from mobile devices.71 Transportation experts, though, worry that the bills might also limit “the collection of aggregate and anonymous location data of the kind that is critical for vehicle probe data services for generating real-time traffic reports.”72 It remains to be seen whether drivers will allow themselves to be tracked by the government for other purposes, such as paying user fees. There are, to be sure, technical ways of overcoming this problem, including having an onboard data unit simply talk to a gas pump, so that the fee is calculated from one fill-up to the next.30
  • 33. Figure 9. The future of urban mobility: Scenario 3SOCIAL TRANSPORT1 After telecommuting from home in the COMMUTE PLANNER morning, you need to get across town for an afternoon meeting with a client. TIME COST LBS CO2 HEALTH AWARD PTS. 2 A quick comparison of the time, cost, carbon 3 It’s raining when your meeting wraps up, so footprint, health-benefit analysis, and awards you opt to share a ride to the gym after work. points associated with all of your possible travel You pull up your options, you see that there are shower facilities real-time rideshare and bike rack within a couple blocks of your app and see that a client’s office and opt driver headed in the to grab a bikeshare same direction is just across town. a few blocks away. 5 When you get home, you log the day’s 4 When you get out of the locker room you have an alert from your personal travel assistant that indicates there’s been an accident a half mile trips and see that you are close to the MY TOTAL POINTS 2,350 MY RANK from your apartment and traffic’s at a stand top of the employee #4 still. You opt to burn off some additional trip reduction POINTS NEEDED FOR calories and walk home rather leaderboard at NEXT AWARD than wait for traffic to clear. work—just 300 300 points away from that mountain bike you’ve had your eye on.Scenario 3: Social transport The key concept in that vision, “collabora- tion,” suggests that transportation can becomeT HERE is a fundamental disconnect at the heart of the current transportation system:It’s a system, yet its parts don’t talk to one something more than simply the aggregation of millions of people’s individual decisions about how to get where they want to go. Theanother directly. With the advent of networked day is not far off when their decisions can becars and infrastructure, location awareness, informed by other people’s advice, broaderand social networks, however, that may be system-level objectives, real-time travel condi-coming to an end. tions, crowdsourced information, and even In fact, at the Deloitte session, when partici- community values.pants were asked to coalesce around the mostcompelling vision created in the room that day, Socially-informed decision makinghere is what they chose: Some of this is already happening. YouThe transportation system of the future will might notice on a website that there’s a ballbe built on collaboration among neighbors, game at the stadium you pass on your waycommunities, governments, and traffic managers home from work, or see a tweet from a friendon everything from traffic planning to signal that there’s a 15-minute delay on the rail transittiming to commute planning. system. If you’re waiting for a rideshare or 31
  • 34. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility The transportation system of the future will be built on collaboration among neighbors, communities, governments, and traffic managers on everything from traffic planning to signal timing to commute planning. using a peer-to-peer car-sharing service, you’re reasons: because they want to help others or also relying on the service—through the expe- they consider it more environmentally friendly, riences of people who’ve already used it—to or they find that it saves them money. The make sure that the person who’ll be giving you point, says ITNAmerica founder and president a ride or renting your car is trustworthy. Katherine Freund, is that “People have a lot of different reasons for making the choices they Mapping transport to make. So you have to think about them, under- social objectives stand them, and build a system that pays atten- You can also see the outline of a different tion.”73 In other words, you have to build in the way of thinking about transportation emerg- ability to capture motivations and behaviors ing in a nonprofit endeavor like ITNAmerica, that go beyond simply trying to get from point a ridesharing service aimed at seniors. It is A to point B in the fastest, most convenient built on the willingness of hundreds of people way possible. in a given community to collaborate on the The problem is that all this information, common goal of making transport available to from real-time commute problems to your people who either can’t drive anymore, or have neighbors’ values when it comes to transporta- chosen to give up their cars. Its members pay tion, remains scattered. It is hard to get a more into “personal transportation accounts” with holistic view. cash, by sharing space in their own cars, or by Here is the ideal: When it’s time to get volunteering their labor. And they offer rides— somewhere, you plug in your commute or and, later, ask for them—for any number of your itinerary, and the network gives you every option, whether you’re going to work or just to do some shopping across town. It lets you know about traffic conditions, whether a rideshare possibility is passing your way, whatRIDEAMIGOS CORP’S VIRTUAL TMO time the next bus or train gets to a nearby sta-The CCTMO created by RideAmigos doesn’t just tion, and how long it would take you to the cost and time of different travel modes, italso does a carbon dioxide and health-benefit analysis, In a sense, as KPCB’s Ryan Popple puts it, “Theand awards points to members on a tiered basis— idea would be that you can travel to any citybiking to work gets more points than carpooling. in the world and have technology provide theUsers with the highest point totals are awarded free same experience as if you were there with abikes, transit passes, and other goods funded by local trusted friend who could tell you exactly whatgovernment, businesses, and nonprofits that have joined road you should be on at that time of day, orin the effort. All of these insert a social componentinto what had been purely individual decisions. how to complete a trip using multiple modes of transportation.”74 The system might also take32
  • 35. advantage of real friends, who post to your employers or governments or, as in Centurysocial network advising on how to get a ride- City, a community of institutions interested inshare or taxi discount, for instance, or alerting changing behavior. Discounts, travel vouchers,everyone to a particularly convenient route certificates to restaurants or stores—all mightthey’ve discovered. have an impact. So might out-and-out cash. But in the vision laid out by participants In Palo Alto, Stanford University computerat the Deloitte session, the network would do scientist Balaji Prabhakar has used a $3 millionmore than promote cost and travel efficiency. research grant from the USDOT to set up aIt would also take into account your lifestyle lottery—commuters who travel to campus dur-preferences and what you don’t like—maybe ing off-peak times could win up to $50 in theirit would give you information about how to paychecks. As a result of Prabhakar’s work,walk to where you’re going, given your desire Singapore is considering a similar system forto burn off calories. And embedded in it would transit riders where a trial run lowered rush-be not only information about road and transit hour ridership by 10 percent.77conditions and dynamic pricing levels, but also But as RideAmigos Corp’s Jeff Chernickinformation about what friends and neighbors argues, information in and of itself can beare doing and some reward system, like that a powerful motivator. Price, time, and cashof RideAmigos Corp, to encourage particular incentives matter, of course, but so might thechoices. The challenge, as Freund puts it, is carbon emitted by each choice, the caloriesto “connect transport to human motivation burned, the times when neighbors headed inbeyond just saving time and money.” the same direction are leaving their homes, even the bottom-line costs of a car ride versusHow do we get there? a bus ride versus a bike ride. You need look no In some ways, the building blocks for further to see the power of this approach thanthis scenario are already in place. As Cisco’s the changes in driving habits of Toyota PriusMai and Schlesinger say of automobiles, owners as they seek to boost their gas mileage“Ubiquitous vehicle connectivity not only or Nissan Leaf owners as they try to increaseallows automakers to ride the wave of smart their efficiency. This is also the thinking thatmobile technology, but also enables a funda- underlies Opower’s customer engagement plat-mental strategy shift from merely building form, which includes “home energy reports”cars to selling personal travel time well- that help power providers give customersspent.”75 The same can be true for any mode of detailed information about their energy usagetravel—and for a definition of “well-spent” that and compare it to their neighbors’.78 Dynamic,goes beyond being entertained while you are up-to-the-minute information from both pri-in transit. vate and public sources that is readily available to users will help them make decisions that, on1. Design the user dashboard a grand scale, should lead to a more efficient The challenge, as transportation shifts and effective a freer, more user-centered paradigm, ishow to create incentives that broaden users’ 2. Gamify the experienceworldviews and take into account the com- Opower’s insight—that allowing peoplemunity and the system as a whole. Or, as Susan to compare their usage with their neighbors’Grant-Muller puts it, “The notion is to incen- might change behaviors and yield less energytivize people to make choices that are not just consumption—helps explain the rising interestoptimizing for themselves but optimizing for in the gamification of behavior.. The appeal tothe system as a whole at the same time.”76 users’ competitive instincts (whether in actual There is, of course, the straightforward competition, in trying to amass points, orapproach. Incentives can be provided by simply by comparison), holds the promise of 33
  • 36. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityTHE PROMISE OF PROJECT SUNSETIn Europe, Project SUNSET is exploring the impact that incentives and gamification might have. “We can thinkabout it in terms of a points system a bit like air miles, and the idea that you accrue points by making sustainablechoices or choices that are in line with your higher level objectives within the transport system,” says Grant-Muller.79The EU-run project arises from a belief among European transport thinkers there that the spread oftechnologies putting users at the center of the transportation system will ultimately offer only marginalimprovement to overall mobility unless individual choices can be brought into line with broader system-level objectives. Project SUNSET sits “at the interface between ICT technology, infrastructure and theindividual traveller,” in the words of Grant-Muller and her University of Leeds colleague, Frances Hodgson.“Its goal is more efficient, safer and environmentally aware transport network management.”80What may be most intriguing about the project is that it is being spearheaded by players and firms inthe information realm. They include providers of location-based services and mobile-phone operators, aswell as local and national governments and university research centers. The project will connect urbanmobility managers with users—and users with one another—through a smartphone app, allowing usersto receive information tailored to their particular travel behavior; the more they use the app, the more itlearns about their mobility patterns. SUNSET will also link with existing roadside sensors to provide real-time traffic information. Users will be able to share information about their own experiences on roadsor transit, and track their progress in meeting particular goals—walking more, say, or reducing carbonemissions. “We’re going to develop the opportunity to reach out to people to personalize incentives to tryand encourage the kind of behavioral change that is part of people-centered mobility,” says Grant-Muller.81 encouraging them to think about what they an aggregate level, ensuring complete data do (whether it’s using energy or driving solo privacy.”82 to work) in ways that other approaches haven’t Of course, this places Facebook in a role succeeded in doing. that it never envisioned and wasn’t really designed for. “What we don’t want is to have 3. Create network effects a lot of users with a lot of trust, faith, and In order for efforts like these to have any commitment in a particular social network- real impact, though, they will have to scale ing brand and for something to happen that up. They will, in other words, have to develop undermines that trust,” says Grant-Muller. into a network, with all the benefits that accrue “These sites need to evolve a growing sense of from creating linkages and critical mass. social responsibility and awareness of their role Opower pointed the way to one pos- in influencing behavior within a wider arena sible answer last fall, when it partnered with than they were originally set up for.”83 Facebook and the Natural Resources Defense Moreover, she points out, there is a risk of Council to create a Facebook app allowing the “digital divide” spilling over into transpor- users to track—and boast about—how much tation. “Will people who, for whatever reason, electricity they’re using. People on opposite can’t access the network become second-class sides of the world can compare themselves to citizens because they won’t have up-to-date one another, and users can compare them- transport information?” she asks. “Will they selves to Facebook friends or even people on lack the ability to influence or engage, or to Facebook in similar-sized homes. Moreover, benefit from the rewards that will be part of Opower said in its press release, “People will such networks?”84 be able to benchmark their home energy use against a national database of millions of homes. All benchmarking will be done on34
  • 37. Looking aheadI F anything, the dizzying pace of change in transportation is likely only to acceler-ate. The players pouring into the field—con- can the public sector best get out of the way of innovation, yet also meet the need for a public conversation and possible legislation on suchsumer electronics, mobile communications, issues as privacy and dynamic pricing? If gov-app makers, smart infrastructure and smart ernment is going to seize fresh opportunities totransport entrepreneurs, forward thinkers in lay the groundwork for emerging technologiesthe automotive industry—are transforming and entrepreneurial models, how can it makeit and creating opportunities for even newer the wisest use of its limited resources?players. Others are arriving with experience There remains a lot of work to solving problems in other fields — energy Standards for the technology that will beconservation, for instance, or telecommunica- crucial to the new mobility have yet to betions—and bringing fresh insights with them finalized. Frameworks for public-privatethat, in turn, strike new sparks among existing partnerships must be put in place, monitored,transport thinkers. and adapted as needs change. The simple As the scenarios above suggest, we are notion that people’s mobility, rather thanalready seeing aspects of what this new world vehicle throughput, ought to be at the centermight look like. Smartphones are expand- of the system will demand a change in cultureing their reach in both numbers of users and throughout public transportation depart-phone capabilities, and thus creating new mod- ments. There will undoubtedly be a public role,els for getting people from point A to point perhaps a central one, in making it easier forB. Social networking is abetting new ways of travelers to experience an integrated transpor-thinking about organizing communities and tation system. Providing safe and reliable infra-motivating change. Insights into human behav- structure with the capacity to handle demandior—think gamification—are rewriting how we will undoubtedly remain a core governmentapproach transportation problem solving. And, function, even if the models for how to financeof course, emerging technologies are chang- and create it pretty much every aspect of how we get Still, what is most exciting about thisaround. As a field, transportation has become particular moment is that the opportunitiesrich with possibility. seem unlimited for both the private and public The challenge, especially for government, sectors to make human mobility cleaner, safer,is to find its footing in this dizzying environ- more efficient, and more enjoyable. Findingment (see figure 1 for a roadmap of where to our way into this new era may take work,get started). This means asking hard questions: but there’s no question that we have crossedAre there existing laws that need to be changed its brink.or updated to meet tomorrow’s realities? How 35
  • 38. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityAppendix: Forum participants D ELOITTE convened a one-day session that brought together a distinguished array of leading innovators, policymakers, points of agreement about the likely features and qualities a digital-age transportation system would contain if we take full advantage technologists, and subject matter experts at the of the technological and organizational forefront of the transformation of mobility to breakthroughs that are already apparent. The consider how emerging trends in technology, session was held on January 26, 2012, at the business and society could transform the Waterview Conference Center in Arlington, transportation landscape in the coming Virginia, following the conclusion of the years (a list of forum participants is included Transportation Research Board’s 91st Annual below). The wide-ranging and thought- Meeting in Washington, D.C. provoking discussion produced intriguing Alexander Bayen Patrick DeCorla-Souza Assistant Professor, Civil and P3 Program Manager Environmental Engineering Federal Highway Administration University of California, Berkeley Tiffany Dovey Fishman Chris Borroni-Bird Manager, Public Sector Research Director, Advanced Technology Deloitte Services LP Vehicle Concepts General Motors William Eggers Global Director, Public Sector Research Marcus Bowman Deloitte Services LP Founder 3G Mobility, LLC Stephen Ezell Senior Analyst Joe Butler Information Technology and Data & Systems Group Manager Innovation Foundation California Center for Innovative Transportation Katherine Freund Founder and President Jeffrey Chernick ITNAmerica CEO and Cofounder RideAmigos Corp Eric Gilliland General Manager Ken Clay Capital Bikeshare Global Account Manager TomTom Adam Greenfield Founder and Managing Director Nick Cohn Urbanscale Senior Business Development Manager TomTom36
  • 39. Ian Grossman Gabriel RothVice President Research FellowAmerican Association of Motor The Independent InstituteVehicle Administrators Adam SchlichtJenn Gustetic Management AnalystAssociate Director, Strategic US Department of TransportationEngagement & CommunicationsPhase One Consulting Group Amy Schlappi Fleet ManagerStephen Keathley ZipcarState Transportation Market Offering LeaderDeloitte Consulting LLP Avi Schwartz Senior ManagerKen Laberteaux Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLPSenior Principal Research Scientist,Future Mobility Research Department Sonali SonejiToyota Research Institute of North America Research ManagerJoung Lee Arlington County Commuter ServicesDeputy Director, Center for Alene TchourumoffExcellence in Project FinanceAmerican Association of State Highway Managerand Transportation Officials Deloitte Consulting LLPFelix Martinez Jim TempletonStrategic Relationship Manager Specialist LeaderDeloitte Services LP Deloitte Consulting LLPMartine Micozzi Tom WestManagement and Policy Specialist DirectorTransportation Research Board California Center for Innovative TransportationPaul MinettCofounder, President and CEO Yu YuanTrip Convergence Ltd Research Staff Member, Connected Vehicles and Mobility InternetDan Morgan IBMLead Associate, Open Governmentand Innovation Practice Mohammed YousufPhase One Consulting Group Office of Operations R&D, Turner-Sean O’Sullivan Fairbank Highway Research CenterCofounder and Managing Director Federal Highway AdministrationAvego Jim ZiglarEllice Perez Senior Vice PresidentRegional Vice President Deloitte Corporate Finance LLCZipcar 37
  • 40. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban MobilityEndnotes 1. David Schrank, Tim Lomax, and Bill 13. Borroni-Bird, “Reinventing the Automobile.” Eisele, “2011 Urban Mobility Report,” 14. Susan Zielinski, “Connecting (and Trans- Texas Transportation Institute, Septem- forming) the Future of Transportation: A ber 2011, < brief and practical primer for implementing ments/mobility-report-2011.pdf>. sustainable door- to-door transportation 2. Ibid. systems in communities and regions,” 3. US Department of Transportation, Research Sustainable Mobility & Accessibility Re- and Innovative Technology Administration, search and Transformation, University of National Household Travel Survey, 2001-2002, Michigan, < < bitstream/2027.42/69252/4/100624.pdf>. household_travel_survey/daily_travel.html>. 15. The Internet of Things refers to the point in 4. Dr. Chris Borroni-Bird, “Reinventing the time when more ‘things,’ or everyday objects, Automobile: Personal urban mobility for the were connected to the Internet than people. 21st century,” presentation at Deloitte’s Future For additional background on the Internet of Transportation workshop, January 26, 2012. of Things, see Dave Evans, “The Internet of Things How the Next Evolution of the Internet 5. US Department of Transportation, Federal Is Changing Everything,” Cisco, April 2011, Highway Administration, 2009 National House- < hold Travel Survey, December 2011, <http:// docs/innov/IoT_IBSG_0411FINAL.pdf>. transportation/2012/html/table_03_03.html>. 16. Paul Didier, “Continue Driving the Inter- net of Things,” Cisco, October 20, 2011, 6. United Nations Department of Economic and < Social Affairs/Population Division, “World continue-driving-the-internet-of-things/>. Urbanization Prospects: The 2011 Revision,” August 2012, < 17. Kevin Fitchard, “If Cars Could Talk to One FINAL-FINAL_REPORT%20WUP2011_ Another, What Could (and Should) They Annextables_01Aug2012_Final.pdf>. Say?” GigaOM, February 28, 2012, <http:// 7. Borroni-Bird, “Reinventing the Automobile.” another-what-could-and-should-they-say/>. 8. Interview with Ryan Popple, partner, Kleiner 18. Tom Vanderbilt, “The Congestion Killer,” New Perkins Caufield & Byers, October 17, 2011. York Times Magazine, June 3, 2012, <http:// 9. Schrank, Lomax, and Eisele, “2011 Urban Mobility Report.” 04E6DD1E31F930A35755C0A9649D8B63>. 10. Ibid. 19. Mike Schagrin, “Safety Pilot–The world’s most extensive real world deployment of connected 11. Thilo Koslowski, “Your Connected vehicle safety,” Intelligent Transportation Vehicle Is Arriving,” Technology Review, Systems Joint Program Office, Research and January 3, 2012, <http://www.technolo- Innovative Technology Administration, U.S.>. Department of Transportation, October 12. Shira Ovide, “Tapping ‘Big Data’ to Fill 20, 2011, < Potholes,” Wall Street Journal, June 12, 2012, tions/pdf/SafetyPilot_Overview.pdf>. < 2702303444204577460552615646874.html>.38
  • 41. 20. US Department of Transportation, “DOT 33. City-Go-Round, “All US Transit Agen- Launches Largest-Ever Road Test of Con- cies,” <http://www.citygoround. nected Vehicle Crash Avoidance Technology: org/agencies/us/?public=all>. Nearly 3,000 Vehicles Will Send Wi-Fi-like 34. For more information, see RideAmigos Corp’s Signals that Warn of Safety Hazards, Could virtual TMO and transportation dashboard Help Reduce Crashes During Year-Long tools at Research Project,” August 21, 2012, <http:// VirtualTMO and Century City’s TMO at>. Interview with Dr. Susan Grant-Muller, 35. Zielinski, “Connecting (and Transform- director of research, Institute for Trans- ing) the Future of Transportation.” port Studies, October 18, 2011. 36. Samuel J. Palmisano, “A Smart Transporta-22. Adam Greenfield, “Elements of a Networked tion System: Improving mobility for the 21st Urbanism,” dConstruct 09, Brighton, UK, century,” Intelligent Transportation Society of September 4, 2009, <http://2009.dconstruct. America, 2010 Annual Meeting & Conference, org/podcast/networkedurbanism/>. Houston, TX, May 5, 2010, < Deloitte, Summary of Key Findings com/smarterplanet/us/en/transportation_sys- from Car-Pooling and Car-Sharing tems/article/palmisano_itsa_speech.html>. Analysis, September 2012. 37. Ibid.24. Andreas Mai and Dirk Schlesinger, “A 38. Interview with Kari Watkins, assistant Business Case for Connecting Vehicles: professor, School of Civil and Environ- Executive Summary,” Cisco Internet Busi- mental Engineering, Georgia Institute ness Solutions Group, April 2011, <http:// of Technology, October 18, 2011. Connected-Vehicles_Exec_Summary.pdf>. 39. Stephen Ezell, “Explaining International IT Ap- plication Leadership: Intelligent transportation25. “Paying Our Way: A new framework systems,” Information Technology & Innova- for transportation finance”, final report tion Foundation, January 2010, <http://www. of the National Surface Transportation>. Infrastructure Financing Commission, February, 2009, 40. Interview with Watkins. NSTIF_Commission_Final_Report.pdf 41. Connected Vehicle Technol-26. Ibid. ogy Challenge, <http://>.27. William J. Mitchell, Christopher E. Borroni- Bird, and Lawrence D. Burns, Reinventing 42. “ Reaches More Than the Automobile: Personal urban mobility for 3.6 Million Global Users,” Carpooling. the 21st century (Cambridge, Massachu- com, March 22, 2012, <http://www. setts: The MIT Press, 2010), chapter 8. press-releases/36m-global-users/>.28. Ibid. 43. Interview with Popple.29. Donald Shoup, “Free Parking or Free Markets,” Access, Number 38, spring 44. Interview with Sean O’Sullivan, manag- 2011, < ing director, Avego, October 17, 2011. access38_free_parking_markets.pdf>. 45. Mai and Schlesinger, “A Business30. Ibid. Case for Connecting Vehicles.”31. Robin Chase, “Low Carbon Cars Alone 46. Ibid. Will Not Solve Today’s Problems, Nor 47. Barrie Kirk, “Connected Vehicles: An Meet Tomorrow’s Needs,” Nissan Technol- executive overview of the status and ogy Magazine, April, 28, 2011, <http://www. trends,” Globis Consulting, November 21, 2011, < MAGAZINE/5guestsfuture-3.html>. Connected_Vehicles_Globis_rpt.pdf>.32. Matthias Weber, “Future Mobility: Interview 48. “Roadmap to 2030: GM sustainable urban mo- with Robin Chase (Buzzcar, Paris),” Checkdi- bility blue paper,” General Motors, November sout, January 16, 2012, <http://checkdisout. 7, 2010, < com/2012/01/16/checkdisout-6-future-mobili- Media/documents/CN/ZH/2010/20101105%20 ty-interview-with-robin-chase-buzzcar-paris/>. GM%20Sustainable%20Urban%20 Mobility%20Blue%20Paper.pdf>. 39
  • 42. Digital-Age Transportation: The Future of Urban Mobility 49. Borroni-Bird, “Reinventing the Automobile.” low—but the pricing mechanism has also 50. Ibid. allowed traffic on expressways and arterial roads to flow freely and at reasonable speeds. 51. Mai and Schlesinger, “A Business Other cities, such as London and Stockholm, Case for Connecting Vehicles.” have instituted their own versions of “conges- 52. Ibid. tion pricing.” The most ambitious effort in the United States—an elaborate proposal by New 53. “Connected Vehicle Research,” Intelligent York City mayor Michael Bloomberg—died Transportation Systems Joint Program in the state legislature. Still, Minnesota has a Office, Research and Innovative Technol- small-scale version on a stretch of I-394 from ogy Administration, US Department of downtown Minneapolis through the suburbs. Transportation, < connected_vehicle/connected_vehicle.htm>. 62. “Beijing Telecom Users Pay Bus, Subway Fares with Cell Phones,” People’s Daily Online, 54. For more information on the Connected May 26, 2011, < Vehicle Core System Project, see http://www. cn/90001/90776/90882/7391806.html>. 63. “SEPTA Board Awards Contract for 55. Kirk, “Connected Vehicles.” New Payment Technologies Program,” 56. Nokia, “New Car Connectivity Consortium Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Aims to Put In-Vehicle Infotainment into Authority, November 17, 2011, <http://www. High Gear,” press release, March 16, 2011,>. < 64. Brittni Rubin, “Transit Agencies Turn to New, car-connectivity-consortium-aims-to-put- Innovative Contactless Payment Systems,” in-vehicle-infotainment-into-high-gear/>. Metro Magazine, December 2011, <http://www. 57. Andy Updegrove, “Has the Battle for the Digital Car Been Won?” ConsortiumInfo. Transit-agencies-turn-to-new-innovative- org, March 18, 2011, <http://www.con- contactless-payment-systems.aspx>. 65. Interview with Rob Zimmer, senior systems php?story=20110318094909562>. engineer, Battelle, October 18, 2011. 58. Richard Bishop, “Did the World Congress 66. Erik Holm, “Progressive Executives Tout Offer Glimpses of a Connected Vehicle Snapshot Program,” MarketWatch, June World?” Thinking Highways, 6:4 (Novem- 14, 2012, <http://www.marketwatch. ber 2011-January 2012), p. 8, <http:// com/story/progressive-executives-tout- snapshot-program-2012-06-14>. Magazine.aspx?id=207f4409-92a4-4f35- b336-328ec5683bb5&issue=999a79e0- 67. Meghan Walsh, “Pay-As-You-Drive 3826-4303-b6c9-24f40ed1c355>. Insurance Gets a Push from Progres- sive,” Bloomberg Businessweek, July 09, 59. Fitchard, “If Cars Could Talk to One Another.” 2012, < 60. Kirk, “Connected Vehicles.” articles/2012-07-09/pay-as-you-drive- 61. Limited “real-world” pricing schemes have insurance-gets-a-push-from-progressive>. been in play on the roads for decades, ever 68. Matthew Roth, “California’s Pay as You since Singapore enacted the first such system Drive Insurance Program Could Reduce in 1975. The basic idea is simple: Using road Driving,” SF.Streetsblog,org, December 17, space efficiently means charging for its use 2010, < based on its marginal social cost. Because californias-pay-as-you-drive-insurance- the marginal cost of that space depends on program-could-reduce-driving/>. the level of congestion at any given moment, 69. Mileage-Based User Fee Policy Task Force, economists have come to believe that the “Report of Minnesota’s Mileage-Based User “price” should depend on traffic conditions. Fee Policy,” report prepared by the Humphrey Singapore’s “area-based” tolling system went School of Public Affairs at the University of fully electronic in 1998. It is not fully dy- Minnesota, December 2011, <http://www. namic—prices to enter the controlled areas of the city-state are adjusted quarterly and during pdf/mbufpolicytaskforcereport.pdf>. school holidays. What doesn’t really change is that the cost of driving is high in Singapore, and the number of car users comparatively40
  • 43. 70. Trey Baker, Ginger Goodin, and Chris 76. Interview with Grant-Muller. Pourteau, “Is Texas Ready for Mileage 77. John Markoff, “Incentives for Driv- Fees? A briefing paper” Texas Transporta- ers Who Avoid Traffic Jams,” New tion Institute, February 2011, <http://tti. York Times, June 12, 2012>. 78. To see what this looks like, go to: http://71. Julia Angwin and Jennifer Valentino-Devries, “Apple, Google Collect User Data,” Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2011, <http:// 79. Interview with Grant-Muller. 80. ITS International, “A New Beginning 703983704576277101723453610.html>. for Travel Information, Based on Users’72. Robert Kelly and Mark Johnson, “Mobile Needs,” < Services, Location Data and Privacy in a categories/travel-information-weather/ Smartphone World,” Thinking Highways, 6:4 features/a-new-beginning-for-travel- (November 2011-January 2012), p. 4, <http:// information-based-on-users-needs/>. 81. Interview with Grant-Muller. Magazine.aspx?id=291d67fa-c1d3-40c0- 82. “Facebook, Opower Partner on Social Energy 8ee6-a83878472668&issue=999a79e0- App,” CNN, October 17, 2011, <http://articles. 3826-4303-b6c9-24f40ed1c355>. Comments made by Katherine Freund opower-facebook-energy-app_1_app-home- at Deloitte’s Future of Transporta- energy-offer-energy-savings?_s=PM:TECH>. tion workshop, January 26, 2012. 83. Interview with Grant-Muller.74. Interview with Popple. 84. Ibid.75. Mai and Schlesinger, “A Business Case for Connecting Vehicles: Executive Summary.” 41
  • 44. For more information, please contact:William D. EggersDirector, Public Sector ResearchDeloitte Services LPPhone: +1 202-246-9684Email: weggers@deloitte.comThis publication contains general information only, and none of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, its member firms, or its and theiraffiliates are, by means of this publication, rendering accounting, business, financial, investment, legal, tax, or other professional adviceor services. This publication is not a substitute for such professional advice or services, nor should it be used as a basis for any decision oraction that may affect your finances or your business. Before making any decision or taking any action that may affect your finances oryour business, you should consult a qualified professional adviser.None of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, its member firms, or its and their respective affiliates shall be responsible for any losswhatsoever sustained by any person who relies on this publication.About DeloitteDeloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network ofmember firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see for a detailed descriptionof the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms. Please see for a detaileddescription of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rulesand regulations of public accounting.Copyright © 2012 Deloitte Development LLC. All rights reserved.