I recently gave a presentation to the CPT Scotland Conference. The theme of the pitch was to look at the future of Smarter Transport in Scotland. The nub of the presentation was that change is in our midst and Scotland is in a great position to prosper in the future. This is because Scotland hjas a number of world leading transport providers; plus, with its regulatory freedom Scotland has a unique opportunity to become a smart transport champion and centre of excellence
The changes that I predict will happen include: The move to a multi-modal world; smart ticketing that will react to changes as the situation demands; closer alignment of traveler needs to providers ability to supply and better utilisation of assets. All as a result of harnessing the information now being generated by people, machines (buses, trams) and networks (roads, railways and IT!).
Check out this you tube video of Smarter Mobility
However, not changing behaviour in a smart transport world will see today's transport providers becoming marginalised. They will simply be providing moving assets that collect people and drop them off. Control of the customer, their experience and the travel outcomes they demand will migrate to other entities, (such as retailers or mobile phone companies).
The future of transport I envisage for Scotland is one that is collaborative, information intensive and outcomes measured. Fantastic rural connectivity is blown away by the quality of service that a seamless, safe and secure public transport network in the urban districts provides. Scotland is now multi-modal and covered by a single smart ticketing regime. The transport authority will rapidly respond and apply changes in capacity based on prediction.
How to go from today to the future outlined above is of course not an easy task. Yet, the first steps are being realised in Scotland. Firstly, a collaborative approach is being embraced. Secondly, using information to seek new outcomes is being investigated. Finally, the transport authorities are looking for new approaches that embrace a smarter transport model. Next step is to bring this all together.