The world is urbanizing rapidly, and popula-tion densities are increasing. A United Nationsreport estimates approximately 70 percentof the world’s population will live in cities by2050.
This growth is expanding demandson urban infrastructures of all kinds, includingtransport.IBM research in over 50 developed and devel-oping world cities reveals that although citiesface unique transportation challenges, theirleaders share a number of common ambi-tions.
Most strive for cleaner, less congestedcities and improved traffic flow, primarilythrough increased use of enhanced publicmass transit systems and other alternatives toprivate vehicles. In terms of transport systems,most leaders agree that infrastructure invest-ments are necessary. However, the constraintsof tight capital budgets are driving anincreased focus on the need to better managetransport demand and supply throughdeploying intelligent transport systems (ITS).The majority of cities are at an early stage inunderstanding and realizing the full potentialof ITS. Our research identifies significant gapsbetween the progress of the typical city andthe global leading practice. To understandwhat the leaders are doing, we talked in depthto transport officials and experts responsiblefor transport policies, programs and serviceoperations in selected cities about their trans-port visions out to 2020 and the role of ITSin meeting their objectives.
Specifically, wediscussed their strategies and plans for imple-menting ITS, their progress and any practical
Cities face urgent transport challenges. Many are starting to tackle them by implementing new intelligent transport systems, and some have achieved impressive benefits. However, many cities are at the “early adopter” stage. How can they move forward? We believe five recommendations can assist cities in using new technologies to achieve optimized, integrated transport services.
How cities can improve mobility
By Jamie Houghton, John Reiners and Colin Lim