Are you interested in the issues of soft-mobility and transportation? Then follow our Interreg Reporter on a story on SMART-MR project.

1. What is the focus of SMART-MR project?

Transportation represents a big share of greenhouse gas emissions in the EU 28 (24.4% out of which 71.9% are generated by road transportation). It is at the core of the Europe 2020 strategy to reduce these emissions and to increase the share of renewable energy consumption by 20%. This is crucial for the shift towards low-carbon economy, especially in the big metropolitan regions where the issues of congestions and greenhouse gas emissions are the most striking.  

In this context, the SMART-MR project, born from the Interreg IVC project CATCH-MR, is trying to improve urban transport policy and to provide sustainable measures for resilient low-carbon transportation and mobility at metropolitan regions’ level. This would allow them to provide healthy living conditions for inhabitants and support environments for businesses’ growth. 

2. What are SMART-MR project partners?

The SMART-MR project partnership gathered ten partners from eight different metropolitan regions:

  • capitals: Ljubljana in Slovenia – the lead partner, Oslo in Norway, Helsinki in Finland, Budapest in Hungary and Rome in Italy; and
  • regional hubs: Goteborg in Sweden, Porto in Portugal and Barcelona in Spain.

3. How is the learning process organised?

The project partners will organise seven interregional workshops related to the four following themes:

  • Providing methods and tools for participatory transport planning;
  • Translating urban mobility plans to the metropolitan region’s level; 
  • Deploying solutions for low-carbon station areas as intermodal nodes and areas of low-carbon freight and services; 
  • Supporting sharing economy and innovative transport management for new sustainable modes of people’s mobility.

Each workshop will be preceded by surveys to be filled by each metropolitan region, providing in-depth analysis on how the workshop’s topic affects and is dealt with by the different partners, in order to prepare for fruitful exchange of experience. Two representatives and two most relevant stakeholders per region will attend the workshops. This will result in analytical support for action, policy recommendations, final good practices guide and the elaboration of action plans.  

4. One good practice you feel excited about?

So far, four thematic workshops have been carried out. The second one, which was held in Rome on 21 and 22 March 2017, focused on innovative ways to create a mobility plan.

The Lazio Regional Plan, one of the good practices presented during this workshop, is innovative in two different ways:

It uses backcasting methods instead of forecasting. Meaning that, instead of trying to foresee what mobility and transportation will look like in Rome in the upcoming years, the Lazio mobility plan focuses on what the metropolitan authority believes should be the ideal situation in the future and the ways (policies) to reach it.

There is a shift between a traffic-based analysis, in which performance evaluation is based on transportation modes' speed and cost, to an accessibility-based analysis, where performance evaluation is based on people and businesses’ ability to reach desired services and activities.

Source: SMART-MR newsletter on creating a mobility plan

If you want any further information on the results of the workshops, check the newsletter which is available on SMART-MR library.