11th-12th May 2021: City Transport & Road Pricing Europe


11th-12th May 2021: City Transport & Road Pricing Europe

The Virtual City Transport & Road Pricing Conference Europe – brought to you by CiTTi Magazine and the RUC Conference 

The Virtual City Transport & Road Pricing Conference Europe was the second iteration within our brand-new international series of online events exploring urban transportation and road pricing.  

Taking place on 11-12 May 2021, the conference was split into four key content themes: road pricing/ tolling, congestion management, sustainability and emissions and transportation infrastructure. 

It brought together transportation communities from across Europe via an engaging and simple-to-use virtual conferencing platform that allows participants to network, share content, host one-to-one video meetings and discuss important industry developments. 

The two-day conference saw over 20 expert speakers highlight the latest road pricing and tolling projects, discuss intelligent transport infrastructures and present urban mobility schemes being implemented in major towns and cities across Europe, from Ljubljana and Oslo to Brussels and Lahti.  

There were also be panel discussions focussing on broader themes, including the impact of Covid-19 on transport funding models, implementation of legislation to reduce urban emissions, and promotion of active travel forms. 

Sponsors, speakers and delegates included toll road operators, toll service providers, toll chargers, systems integrators, automotive manufacturers and suppliers, municipal councils, transportation authorities, transit agencies, state and federal government, mobile telecom operators, telematics solutions providers, consultancies, device and equipment suppliers, technology suppliers and mobility service providers.  

Please note, all timings are in Central European Time. 

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Day 1 - 11th May 2021

Day 2 - 12th May 2021

Session 1: Road Pricing and Tolling

  1. DARS d.d. , Motorway Company in the Republic of Slovenia introduced the vignette system on 1st July 2008. The vignette is a tolling sticker for all personal vehicles and/or vehicles with the maximum permissible weight up to 3.5 tonnes that enables a time-restricted use of motorways and expressways, and is not subject to the number of kilometres driven.

    DARS will introduce an electronic vignette (e – vignette from hereafter) to replace the existing sticker. The new e-vignette system and its enforcement will be based on ANPR technology, will take into account the specifics of the Slovenian tolling system and will be user-friendly. Users will be able to buy  e-vignettes on line or at customer service points. Great emphasis will be placed on the implementation of the enforcement as this is crucial for ensuring the revenue from the collected toll and thus of vital importance for the financial stability of DARS. Enforcement tolling cameras will record every passing vehicle. The records will be processed for number plate recognition (ANPR) and checked whether the vehicle has a valid electronic vignette or whether it is exempt. On addition of that special software will be used to check  vehicle type (up to or above 3.5 T). Therefore a detection of violators will be quick and efficient, as they will be stopped and punished even before they could cross the state border to exit the country. However, it will also be possible sending fines by post without stopping violators, whenever viable.

  2. The new Digital Tachograph is here since 2016 and is widely adopted by fleets in Europe. In its next iteration, the DTCO 4.1 will enable even more services and comply with new regulations.

    In this session, learn more about all the new legal requirements arriving in the coming years ( Mobility package, Cabotage and Posting of workers) and how the next generation of Digital Tachograph will present functionalities to deal with them. The session also presents future trends in compliance services and how the new DTCO 4.1 can be used as a Tolling distributed system in the EETS context.

  3. Finding a better way to enable sustainable transportation is quickly becoming a priority for governments across the UK and Europe. Fortunately, progress in solving the same challenges have already been encountered and being resolved in other parts of the world, including the US, through the highly successful use of telematics data from road usage charging solutions. 

    In this session, learn more about usage based solutions in North America, including how you can leverage valuable lessons learned to enable sustainable and fair transportation for all road users. In this session, you will:

    • Learn from practical experience how road usage charging and telematics data addresses sustainability challenges.
    • Uncover key learnings from successful applications of usage based models in North America.
    • Discover best practices for data collection and management.
  4. Will the planned changes under the Eurovignette directive shift the market to lower emissions trucks - and how? James Nix plans to mainly focus on the CO2-related proposals in the Eurovignette directive. He will outline how they would apply to zero and low emission trucks, and the benefits for the uptake of such vehicles. He will also share T&E's model for Europe's truck fleet as a whole to 2030 assuming a progressive Eurovignette reform, and the likely implications for truck toll rates.  
  5. The Norwegian tolling system provides a large and important financial contribution to the public investment in infrastructure. In 2021 currently 60 different projects have tolling og there are 880 million passages throught the AutoPASS-system every year. The tolling system also provides important regulation in the larger cities and helps the promotion of electronical vehicles. The tolling sector in Norway has been through a large reform, and now consists of five regionally owned tolling charging companies. The role of the toll service provider is in the process of being separarated from the toll chargers, and new companys are making their way into the norwegian tolling sector. 

Session 3: Emissions and Sustainability 

  1. Oslo has ambitious climate goals and the target is to become climate neutral by 2030. Today the transport sector is responsible for more than 50% of the Oslo’s emissions. This calls for strong actions towards traffic reduction and transition to emission free mobility solutions. In his presentation, Paal Mork from the City of Oslo will give an overview of measures taken to encourage electrification of transport. A widescale deployment of charging infrastructure gives the people of Oslo opportunities to choose electric vehicles. Added up with special pricing on toll roads and parking, the plan to introduce zero emission zones and tax exemptions, up to 70% of new vehicles are electric.
  2. Today, serious global trends make tour planning increasingly complex. Often, error-prone manual and spreadsheet based planning approaches cannot cope with these known challenges. Thus, digitalized and automated tools provide excellent benefits to improve tour planning efficiency and accuracy. For all kind of operators, optimized tours offer a great potential for remarkable cost savings and CO2-emission reductions.  

    Greenplan offers an algorithm for optimized tour planning and smart logistics in the B2B-sector. A fully dynamic planning approach enables customers from various industries to move goods or people in an intelligent and sustainable way. The innovative algorithm developed in cooperation with the University of Bonn considers the entire delivery area and deals with a high degree of complexity to find the optimal stop sequence for last mile shipments or service tours. In his presentation, Dr Clemens Beckmann will explain how Greenplan creates efficient tour plans and thus, serves the purpose of greener logistics.

  3. Since January 1st 2018, the Brussels Capital Region is a Low Emission Zone. The Brussels’ LEZ affects cars, vans, and buses and coaches, whether registered in Belgium or abroad. The aim is to help reduce concentrations of harmful pollutants in Brussels’ air (e.g. nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter) and thereby improve people’s health. After 3 years of implementation, Brussels Environment has collected information and monitors the impact of the LEZ on the vehicle fleet, on emissions and air quality concentrations. This will be presented, as well as the upcoming developments of the LEZ.
  4. City of Lahti has the honour following 11 previous cities as the European Green Capital this year. First city in Finland and so far, the most northern and smallest city to do so. Lahti has 120 000 inhabitants and a urban region population of 200 000, which means that Lahti is a typical European mid-size city.

    As most of the Europeans live in cities like Lahti, it is far bigger in size when it comes to the influence it has as a forward thinking and pioneering city in its climate actions. Lahti strongly believes, that if much needed change in fighting climate change and implementing sustainable solutions can be done in cities like Lahti, they can be done everywhere.

    The biggest challenge is to find common understanding in a way that speaks to the masses. Not just the believers. Fearing the unknown make people question science and facts. The necessity of fighting climate change is not prominent to everybody, because there is not enough right, suitable or powerful ways to reach different target groups.

    City of Lahti is finding ways with its citizens and a versatile group of stakeholders to take long lasting and effective actions together.

  5. Nowadays cities are facing big challenges regarding pollution, public health, inclusivity, and accessibility among others. In the Barcelona Metropolitan Area (AMB) we have been working hard to implement different solutions to address these challenges and we can already see some results. From the implementacion of the Low Emissions Zone in Barcelona to cyclologistics, I will explain innovative actions that AMB is doing within its territory.

  6. In December 2019, the European Commission published its long-awaited Strategy for Smart and Sustainable Mobility setting up a vision to make transport smarter and more sustainable. The strategy also set up an objective of 100 climate neutral cities in Europe to be achieved by 2030 and acknowledges the leading role of cities to improve transport sustainability. This session will explore the ways cities can benefit from this new impulse by the EU institutions to foster sustainable urban mobility and achieve cities’ objective in terms of climate change.  

Session 2: Congestion and Traffic Management

    • What will a post-pandemic city look like?
    • Sustainable urban mobility  – future approaches for attractive citizen-orientated cities
    • T-Systems Road User Services GmbH - flexible tolling technologies for city tolling
  1. FIA Region I is a consumer body, representing the interests of over 36 million motorists, riders, pedestrians, and passengers, and it works to ensure safe, affordable, clean, and efficient mobility for all. This presentation will be about users’ points of views, needs, and concerns, and will focus on how to keep urban mobility accessible, affordable, and efficient, while it also becomes clean and green.
  2. This session explores the wide range of benefits and societal impacts that increased cycling levels can generate, including in terms of improved health and well-being, reduced congestion, air and noise pollution, more liveable cities, more vibrant local economies and better social inclusion. It also examines what cities in Europe have been doing to enable more cycling in the pandemic and to effect more lasting change.
  3. European cities increasingly face problems caused by transport and traffic. The question of how to enhance mobility is a cautious balance between reducing congestion and pollution whilst maintaining urban freight routes and the movement of goods. This panel discussion will cover both sides of the debate with Benny Smets, Managing Director of Ninatrans for nearly 30 years representing the trucking and transport industry, and Maxime Uhoda, senior researcher at Brussels Fiscality speaking from experience of implementing congestion charging in Brussels. Both will discuss the impact of reduced congestion during the Covid-19 pandemic, challenges and successes of moving goods through Europe’s busiest cities, how cities can be managed effectively to benefits all parties, and what the future holds for post-pandemic urban mobility as traffic returns to more normal levels.  

  4. The development of road safety in Helsinki is guided by the Road Safety Development Programme. The programme is being updated in 2021. An average of five people per year have died in traffic in Helsinki in the last five years. No pedestrians died in 2019 for the first time in over 100 years. In Helsinki, speed limits have been lowered on the street network several times. In addition, more automatic camera enforcement will be installed. Development plans have also been made for the safety of pedestrian crossings and cycle paths. The analysis of accidents utilizes a map-based accident register

Session 4: Transportation Infrastructure 

  1. Urban space needs to be at the service of humans. For the past seven years as Minister for Mobility and Public Works, François Bausch has pushed a paradigm shift in mobility planning. His focus is on moving people and goods, not vehicles. Urban space needs to be planned in such a way that as little space as possible is necessary for vehicles. Those remaining vehicles and their infrastructure should be “smart” in the sense that they communicate with each other and with their users. In his presentation, Minister Bausch will illustrate this approach with examples.

  2. ÖBB is Europe’s largest night train operator with 19 Nightjet lines linking over 25 European cities. In order to attract customers, we are continuously investing in new trains and new destinations. Although the framework conditions for operating night trains in the EU are quite a challenge.

  3. Accessibility is  a core aspect of sustainable mobility. This presentation includes an overview of international and EU legal and policy frameworks (UN CRPD, EU Disability Rights Agenda), EU’s commitments to sustainability (e.g. EU Green Deal, Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy; Green Paper on Ageing) and will have emphasis on social sustainability as prerogative for participatory and inclusive way of reaching environmental targets. The talk will also share experiences of persons with disabilities in relation to transport accessibility and passenger rights to highlight existing issues for accessibility and passenger rights, including impact of COVID-19 on those. Lastly, Vera Bonvalot will focus on the way forward, best practices and recommendations for accessible urban mobility in the EU, including meaningful dialogue and cooperation with organisations of persons with disabilities; dedicated funding to advance accessibility of transport services and infrastructure; learnings from COVID-19; use of technical instruments such as European Standard for accessibility and usability of the built environment (EN17210).

  4. Autonomous vehicles (AVs) present an opportunity for governments, transport authorities and agencies to improve efficiency, competitiveness, safety, accessibility and reliability of the current public transport infrastructure. Four elements are the key to the success of fully automated, on-demand, door-to-door services in public transportation: technology, legal framework, passenger services and business plans. In this two presentations, Dimitri Konstantas, Professor at the University of Geneva and Stefan Grüttner, Head of Mobility for the district of Kelheim will present real-life case studies and experiences of implementing AVs within public transportation. After the presentations, afternoon chair Katie Searles will bring both presenters together to discuss the wider policy and regulatory framework in Europe, best practices to integrate AVs in public transport, ways to leverage AVs for post-pandemic recovery, funding and procurement strategies and other noteworthy pilot projects and trials on the horizon