Smart Transport

Funding awarded for innovative MaaS pilots

Two major mobility as a service (MaaS) pilots have secured just under £1 million from the Scottish Government to improve access to transport across Scotland.

The pilots aim to support Scotland’s green recovery, seeking to make public transport easier to use and encourage people away from single-occupancy car trips by providing digital access to travel information, so they can be better informed about different ways to plan, undertake and pay for journeys.

The two pilots selected from 15 bids for support from the MaaS Investment Fund are:

  • The University of St Andrews' St Andrews MaaSterplan, which will promote community-centred mobility services. This aims to tackle issues such as congestion and achieve the transition to net zero, promoting sustainable, active and shared transport options.
  • HITRANS' GO-HI pilot to include additional transport modes, a rewards programme, smart card integration and a demand responsive transport solution for rural and island regions.

Minister for transport, Graeme Dey said: “We want to help Scotland to become an international leader in smart mobility. These awards from the second, and final, year of the Mobility as a Service Investment Fund are an important step towards unlocking this potential for innovation.

“MaaS has the potential to transform the way we use transport by making public and shared transport options as desirable as using our car. These awards will help grow the evidence base for MaaS by developing and testing digital solutions that encourage and enable a shift to public and active transport alternatives. All of which can make a significant contribution to a healthier and more sustainable Scotland.

“I look forward to seeing how these projects develop over the coming months.”

Geoff Morris, director of the University of St Andrews Eden Campus, said: “For the University of St Andrews, this funding will be invaluable in helping us to meet our ambitious targets to become carbon net-zero by 2035. As a relatively isolated university, it is important that we improve transport and travel connections in a sustainable way.

“This includes the connections to our new Eden Campus site, which is a showcase for low-carbon innovation, and which will benefit from improved connectivity to the town of St Andrews and to major transport hubs such as Leuchars station. We are looking forward to working with other stakeholders on this exciting project.”

Ranald Robertson, partnership director for HITRANS, said: “I’m delighted that HITRANS now have the opportunity to build on the GO-HI MaaS app which was developed with support from round one of MaaS Investment Fund and launched in June 2021.  

“The new funding will allow the introduction of a rewards and incentivisation programme to encourage sustainable travel by users of GO-HI.

"New travel modes will be added to GO-HI’s coverage including extending the availability of demand responsive transport booked through the app and introducing new electric car club vehicles to make this option available to more people across the Highlands.  Another new development planned is the ability to top up travel smart cards using the app.”

Watch now: Connecting Policy To Solutions Virtual Conference 2021

Smart Transport Conference returned on June 8th & 9th, to facilitate pivotal discussions on the future of transport. 

The UK’s most senior public and private sector transport leaders discussed the impact of Covid-19, achieving the Government’s decarbonisation ambitions, the need for more efficient living and better health, and much more.

Keynote speakers included: 

Kwasi Kwarteng, secretary of state at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), who spoke on BEIS's approach to decarbonising transport, particularly the electrification of the vehicle industry

Keith Williams, co-author of the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail, who spoke on rail’s role in integrated transport, decarbonisation and innovation.

Rachel Maclean, parliamentary under-secretary of state at the Department for Transport, who discussed the future of transport and its pivotal role in a ‘green recovery’ from the pandemic.

 

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