Highlights from the Mobility Forum

6 November 2019

“People are not interested in which border they are crossing, they just want to get where they need to.” We could not have found a better way to encapsulate the importance of mobility planning for the wider urban area than these words from Maria Nimvik Stern, Secretary-General of The Council for the Stockholm Mälar Region.

With the physical expansion of cities beyond their administrative boundaries planning mobility for the functional urban area has become of paramount importance. This was the focus of our three days mobility forum meeting in Uppsala. We sought to connect the dots, highlighting successful mobility planning solutions from cities and metropolitan areas and different approaches to cooperation, coordination and consultation between different levels of government and relevant stakeholders.

The meeting was the perfect occasion to share the result of the work EUROCITIES carried out on the topic. Thanks to interviews, research based contributions and the efforts of the two working groups – sustainable mobility planning and metropolitan areas – EUROCITIES produced a specific SUMP topic guide for metropolitan regions (SUMP Metropolitan regions guide 2019). Due to their economic attractiveness, huge commuters flows, their complex and multi-modal urban transport systems, and for typically being urban nodes located on TEN-T corridors, metropolitan regions increasingly face new challenges. How to work across physical, sectoral and organisational boundaries was at the centre of the discussion we had in Uppsala, where some common success factor emerged:

  • Gather all the relevant stakeholders around the table in order to build consensus on the common challenges and the functional needs of the parties involved.
  • Focus on the functional urban area and strive to overcome the concept of urban suburban and extra-urban transport network.
  • Offer a seamless public transport experience for commuters. Public transport needs to be perceived as easy to use, safe, reliable, accessible and integrated.
  • Speak with one voice when approaching the national authorities. A joint vision, shared among stakeholders can make the message stronger.

The importance of a multi-level governance approach was furthermore stressed when discussing how to foster the integration of urban nodes into the TEN-T network. EUROCITIES has been advocating for a better complementarity between TEN-T policy and urban policy, putting urban nodes high on the EU Commission political agenda. These efforts are reflected in the substantial funding support for Urban Nodes under the recently published Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) call, which was presented and discussed in Uppsala.

E-scooters report coming out soon:
In June 2019, we asked cities to share their experiences on e-scooters. The aim of the survey was to generate a knowledge base on e-scooter regulation by city authorities and to gain an overview of different approaches in Europe. Fifteen city authorities participated in the process and the results were presented and discussed at the Smart and Connected Mobility Working Group meeting. A report has been developed, which will form the basis of a comprehensive report on city authority approaches and views on e-scooters.

The New Paradigm for Safe City Streets:
Developed by the Safe and Active Travel Working Group, The New Paradigm for Safe City Streets declaration establishes 10 principles for road safety at the local level to achieve safe and sustainable mobility in our cities. The declaration is part of a global campaign for road safety with the Global Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety. Sign the declaration today! (The New Paradigm for Safe City Streets)

Pathways to decarbonise the transport sector:
With the revision of the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive on the horizon, the Sustainability Mobility Planning Working Group addressed key questions on how best to establish recharging and refuelling points for fuels of the future in cities across the EU with practical examples and experiences from cities. The output of discussions will feed into the development of a policy paper aimed at the European Commission to ensure that city authorities’ voices are heard in the evaluation of the Directive.


Arianna Americo Project & forum coordinator