The Hubs for Last Mile Delivery Solutions activity aim to alleviate local environmental and traffic problems in urban areas through the creation of shared urban consolidation and distribution centres (UCDC), on the borders of the LEZ implemented in AMB. During the project, a pilot case was carried out, where two hubs were developed. The main purpose of these centres is to prevent highly polluting freight vehicles from delivering in urban areas, enabling the reduction of city pollution and congestion. This objective can be achieved by transhipping and consolidating the goods from the UCDC into electric vehicles, cargo bikes and vehicles with alternative fuels for urban deliveries. The UCDC can also offer various logistic services and retail services with added value, thus creating the possibility of a more efficient business model.

In Stockholm the project demonstrates four complementary actions – three pilots in the central district of Södermalm testing fossil-fuel free deliveries, delivery solutions, a micro-terminal, along with a stakeholder dialogue to reinforce current strategies and harness potential for future development of fossil-fuel free logistics in the inner-city, peripheral zones and wider region.

During the project, benchmarking of all similar solutions implemented in Europe was carried out; the UCDCs’ design, analysis of the UCDCs’ location, marketing strategy, business model of the company offering the new solutions, different workshops in the municipalities and measures of evaluation.

Eventually, the pilot test in Esplugues de Llobregat and Cornellà de Llobregat was not carried out. However, the UCDC has been installed in Stockholm, specifically in Söder Mälarstrand. In this case, only the design and climate adaptation has been carried out.

In addition to the case studies, the project’s last mile distribution company, Vanapedal, has developed the marketing strategy for the following solutions: parcels bike & box, parcels box and cold stuffs bike&box. This has been coupled with the business model.

In order to analyse Vanapedal’s solution, namely the Parcel Box, the time saved in the modal shift of parcels from a van to a cargo bike was calculated. For this purpose, transfer time data was collected to analyse the difference in time spent before and after the application. From the data the average was calculated and the difference of the averages worked out. This gives the difference in the time used before and after the application. 

The conclusion is that the implementation of the Parcel Box has resulted in a saving of 12.87 minutes, i.e., 52% less time than doing it manually.

The time saving is important not only because of the average saving quantified in average staff time, but also because of what the operator can do with this time when incidents cause stress (weather, high volume days, shortage of staff, shortage of motorbikes, etc.).

The main conclusions of the project are: 1) The proposed alternatives meet a pressing market need, combined with the broad coverage offered by the different teams involved in the project they could become an industry cross-cutting product in the near future; 2) The iterative process of algorithmic localisation for MHs seems to be in its last phase. Although the final performance of the results is yet to be proven, the decisions made by the heuristics seem to have a lot of value; 3) If the initiative continues to be managed with the efficiency demonstrated so far, there is a good chance that it will become a leading project in the freight logistics industry, especially for refrigerated boxes.

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