This is a follow-up of our previous blog on how urban mobility behavior has changed during lockdown. In this blog, we look at four possible scenarios of the future for urban mobility post-lockdown. Built around actual behavior, our scenarios combine MOTIONTAG’s mobility behavior and GfK consumer behavior data with views from leading experts in the field.
Usually, people decide which mode of transport they will use based on criteria such as availability, price, convenience, time. For the foreseeable future, that decision will consider new values too – such as the perceived risk of infection and altered loyalties. Post-lockdown, this presents a unique opportunity for urban mobility and city planners to take active measures to direct our altered travel behaviors into positive, sustainable models for cities.
Future #1: No change in urban mobility post-lockdown
This is the most possible future if urban mobility planners do not take positive action during this time. People will go back to their pre-lockdown mobility patterns with all its flaws—but with a notable delay in re-engaging with public transport. This continued public transport avoidance will be down to three factors:
People still wanting to avoid proximity with other people;
The reduced need to commute due to job losses or continued remote working; and
The summer weather encouraging people to continue their new-found love or walking or cycling to work.
The short-term implication for urban mobility in this scenario is people focusing on individual modes of transport. In addition to walking and cycling, this could mean a short-term surge in car usage, leading to increased traffic jams and pollution in urban areas. This will worsen if people who have been working remotely are forced back into commuting to the office before their fear of public infection is over.
The long-term outlook in this scenario is that people will gradually fall back