In this series of blogs, we have teamed up with MOTIONTAG and leading industry experts to help cities understand the new realities and opportunities in urban mobility after lockdown. This first blog looks at what is currently happening and in our second blog, we’ll present different future scenarios and recommendations for actions that city transport and mobility planners can take.
We all know that the coronavirus has radically changed our previous travel behavior. But which of our new travel habits are likely to continue when urban mobility after lockdown is resumed? To show the size of the change, let’s look at how Germany’s nation-wide contact ban has changed the country’s travel behavior.
How urban mobility has changed and what will last after lockdown
Amongst the terrible harm that coronavirus is causing, there is a thread of opportunity for city transport and mobility planners across the globe. Consumers’ mobility habits are changing drastically as we avoid public transport and turn more often to bicycles or our own feet to make local trips. These new habits give city transport planners an opening to proactively sustain new desirable behavior, such as fostering biking and walking and avoid unwanted scenarios, such as people reverting back to individual cars for longer urban distances.
Germany imposed a travel ban on March 23rd and by the first week of April, the distance traveled per person per day fell from the usual average of around 40km to around 15km—and still falling. Added to this, there’s been a dramatic drop in the number of kilometers traveled on public transport, with people covering more distances on foot or bicycle instead.
Looking at this from the time point of view, people are now spending more than 25 minutes a day actively walking or cycling – up from their usual less than 20 minutes per