Model city of intelligent transport concepts
The demands on the mobility of tomorrow are manifold and range from efficiency, climate-friendliness to individualisation. Shipping, air and land transport come together in vibrant Hamburg, which boasts the best conditions for testing and advancing the mobility transition. Around 150 projects have rendered the city on the Elbe a model and laboratory of intelligent transport and logistics solutions. This is the backdrop against which the global transport sector will meet at the leading ITS World Congress for intelligent transport systems and services in Hamburg this autumn. Hamburg became a real laboratory of digital mobility in summer 2020. Recommendations for an environment-and climate-friendly mobility transition are acted upon as part of the project funded by the German Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure in the lab.
Hamburg tops list of Germany’s smartest cities, study finds
Hamburg is the smartest city in Germany. As the overall leader of Bitkom’s Smart City Index 2020, the Hanseatic city leads the mobility ranking and is a "role model of multimodality": Hamburg’s public transport app, HVV Switch, allows users to choose the fastest route from all available means of transport including sharing offers, and to book tickets. Hamburg is now implementing the mobility transition and is focusing on intelligent concepts for sustainable and networked transport.
The ITS strategy, adopted by the senate in 2016, comprises the following six fields of action:
- data and information ( e.g., Urban Data Platform Hamburg, automated traffic counting with thermal imaging cameras)
- intelligent traffic control and guidance (Traffic Light Forecast)
- intelligent infrastructure (Hamburg Box)
- intelligent parking (SynCoPark)
- mobility as a service (HVV Switch, on-demand shuttles like Moia and ioki)
- automated and networked driving (HEAT)
ITS World Congress 2021 in Hamburg
Hamburg will host the ITS World Congress, the largest, most important global event on intelligent transport systems and services, from October 11-15, 2021. Under the motto "Experience Future Mobility Now", emphasis will be on automated, cooperative and networked mobility, digital port and logistics solutions, drones and sustainable mobility concepts. The City of Hamburg alone will showcase over 40 of its 150 mobility projects. Cycling is also a key aspect of the mobility transition.
Sample project: HEAT autonomous e-shuttle
The Hamburg Electric Autonomous Transportation (HEAT) autonomous e-shuttle bus counts among the key ITS projects. As part of this research and development project, Hamburger Hochbahn is testing the first automated mini bus in Hamburg's public transport system. The mini bus has been on roads in HafenCity since 2019, and passengers were first brought on board in autumn 2020. A test track for automated and connected driving (TAVF-HH) is now in operation in downtown Hamburg. The track is open to innovative mobility services provided by vehicle manufacturers, technology companies and research institutions. Both automated driving and automated parking are being tested there.
What began as a ride-sharing service in Europe, the Hamburg-based Wunder Mobility has long since become a global market leader in software and hardware for new mobility services. Gunnar Froh, founder and CEO of the company, remarked: "Flexible and sustainable mobility models are in demand! Our transport system needs new, environment-friendly and future-oriented solutions as part of the mobility and energy transition."
Innovation centre for smart mobility
Hamburg is, of course, also working on solutions for urban mobility and logistics of tomorrow beyond the ITS World Congress. The ITS strategy, for instance, will be continued until at least 2035. The Hamburg Wireless Innovation Competence Center (HAWICC) in HafenCity will also play an important role in future. From 2024, wireless technologies such as 5G and Internet of Things (IoT) will be further developed and tested in the Smart City Centre. HAWICC is to become one of three nationwide sites of the "German Centre of Future Mobility" or Deutschen Zentrums Mobilität der Zukunft planned by the German Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) and is likely to contribute significantly to basic research and technology transfer in wireless digital technologies.