Singapore tops urban mobility readiness report

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Singapore tops a new urban mobility readiness index, which ranks how prepared cities are to incorporate the latest mobility technologies.

SMRT

Singapore tops a new urban mobility readiness index, which ranks how prepared cities are to incorporate the latest mobility technologies.SMRT

Singapore tops a new urban mobility readiness index, which ranks how prepared cities are to incorporate the latest mobility technologies and what they are doing to reshape urban mobility. The top five cities are Singapore, Amsterdam, London, Shanghai, and New York.

Oliver Wyman Forum’s inaugural Urban Mobility Readiness Index: How Cities Rank on Mobility Ecosystem Development, analyzes existing public and private mobility networks; current regulation, policy, and infrastructure; a city’s livability; and its capacity to absorb future technologies. While the index attempts to rank the outlooks for various cities, the research also provides best practices and concrete strategies that will allow cities to upgrade their offerings with a goal of transforming urban mobility from a challenge into a competitive economic advantage.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to urban mobility because no two cities are starting from the same point. For example, cities around the world operate at vastly different stages of development when it comes to mobility. In Los Angeles, 89% of travel involves a car, while in Hong Kong only seven percent does. In Amsterdam, 60% of people get around by cycling or walking; in Mexico City, 70% take mass transit.

  • Key to success for cities is a focus on the development of mobility ecosystems that provide a holistic framework to incorporate advanced technologies and create seamless, multimodal networks.
  • Another pivotal element for cities is working closely with academic and private sector mobility research efforts and testing the latest technologies.

Singapore ranks number one in the index because it recognizes the importance of building ecosystems, private sector and research partnerships, and infrastructure investment, according to the study findings. It has been a pioneer in reducing traffic congestion through various initiatives and has adopted an aggressive approach to integrating cutting-edge technology with progressive transportation policies. The region is leading the way in the latest mobility tools, platforms and services, as well as autonomous driving and real-time, digitized traffic management.

While most of the top 10 represent sprawling metropolitan areas, Amsterdam, the index runner-up, stands in stark contrast, because of its relative compact size and population. Like many other top-scoring cities, it is known for its robust infrastructure, extensive public transportation system, and efforts to downplay the automobile as a transport mode. In recent years, it has adopted policies to foster electric and autonomous vehicles, increase the number of charging stations, and encourage alternate modes of transportation, particularly bicycles. The city has attracted considerable private investment which is helping it with a large-scale smart city initiative as well as the development of a domestic mobility industry.

Additional key findings:

  • The top five cities all have legacy infrastructure such as public transit systems, a history of sustained investment, rapid technology adoption, an engaged private sector including innovative startups, and forward-looking policies that aim for growth.
  • Five of the top 10 cities are in Asia including Singapore, Shanghai, Tokyo, Beijing and Seoul.
  • The average index score is 51 out of 100 across all 30 cities.
  • Seventeen of the cities scored above average: six are in Europe, six in Asia Pacific, four in the US and Canada, and one in the Middle East.

“Municipal governments see the need to become increasingly proactive and agile in the evolving mobility landscape. Cities see the benefits of re-focusing on the basics of public transportation and infrastructure development in order to lead in the next generation of mobility,” said Professor Alexandre Bayen, director of the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. “Cities who embrace technology and have proactive regulation will become leaders in the mobility revolution.”

Oliver Wyman Forum selected an initial set of 30 global cities for in-depth analysis across five categories: social impact, livability, system efficiency, innovation, and market attractiveness. The research is being conducted with the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.