Mobility of young town-dwellers: how do we change the urban transport landscape?
The first Urban Lab-BCG barometer, published in September 2018, reveals some very interesting trends for all those concerned with mobility or the ‘smart city’. Targeting mainly the transport needs of young workers in the Paris region, the study shows that their requirements, and the way they use transport, are constantly and rapidly evolving. More bikes, fewer cars, apps for all types of transport and above all, comfort and fluidity. That sums up in a few words what everyone wants. Half of those surveyed being between 25 and 34 years of age and travelling equally either within Paris or from Paris towards the wider Ile-De-France region, or vice-versa, it is immediately clear that they find their mode of transport is often ‘difficult’ or subject to ‘annoying’ malfunctions.
(source: barometer Les Franciliens se déplacent dans une jungle à civiliser d’urgence !)
Safety, cleanliness and maintenance…very criticized axes
The general problem is well-known to the authorities and to the various players involved, but the new modes of transport come in for even more criticism than the traditional metro or bus. Vélib and Autolib have not really taken off beyond the novelty effect, and are much criticized on two points: safety, and cleanliness and maintenance. Incivility is a major issue for “Urbennials” (urban millennials) and the RATP’s most recent campaign, reminding users of the safety measures to be respected in the metro like those on planes, confirm that the climate has indeed degraded. Aggression, including harassment, has become an insupportable scourge particularly for women. 82% of young people make the point that they would like to see stricter rules imposed concerning the use of transport and good behaviour.
82% of young people make the point that they would like to see stricter rules imposed concerning the use of transport and good behaviour.
Looking to the future, what does this population, mobile by nature, hope for?
Most of them will automatically use smartphones to guide their urban travel, and they would like to see a global App which would allow them to reunite and visualize all at the same time the whole range of transport solutions available, the expected journey time and/or real-time difficulties or delays. Linked naturally to personal geo-localization, but also undoubtedly to that of friends and family, a global App should point them in the right direction more intuitively and more surely than today. In a totally pragmatic and realistic fashion, 57% of Urbennials expect businesses to help improve their transport experience. It is a question not only of technical solutions but also of a change of approach towards more flexibility and adaptability in transport means and in working hours, to produce more fluid movement in towns and cities.
57% of Urbennials expect businesses to help improve their transport experience.
Urban mobility: a taste for innovation
As to more futuristic urban transport means, they are generally welcomed. For example, 77% are prepared to test out a river vehicle on the Seine, and 62% a driverless car. This taste for innovation is more pronounced in men, of whom 60% declare that they would try out a passenger-carrying drone. But the most surprising findings of this survey are elsewhere: for these young workers, transport time should become an opportunity for entertainment or personal fulfilment. Access to network connections, via free onboard 4G, has become an essential requirement and our authorities should take inspiration from the Far East, where Internet is available everywhere and for everyone. To reduce the digital gap and reduce inequality, will also make transport time useful and comfortable.
To read also : Are flying taxis ready to take off?