4 Emerging Trends in Transportation

4 Emerging Trends in Transportation

Technology and mobility are merging. From hybrid cars taking the auto industry by storm to the growing capabilities of artificial intelligence (AI) in everyday life, exciting possibilities are beginning to flourish, which means new movements to familiarize yourself with.

If you’re interested in gearing up for the future of transportation, then here are four emerging trends to explore:


1. Mobility as a Service (MaaS)

It’s estimated that by 2050, incoming populations will increase in urban areas by 68%. The influx of newcomers represents a need to minimize congestion and promote safety on a massive scale; this is where mobility as a Service (MaaS) makes a huge impact. MaaS aims to satisfy the need with a network of mobility solutions from public and private organizations. Sort of like how Google Maps offers you a variety of transportation methods to get from point A to point B, MaaS operates in the same fashion, except companies work alongside cities to provide various mobility options that are accessible, affordable, and timely for a user.


2. Autonomous Vehicles

Self-driving cars may have been fun to imagine as a kid, but nowadays, they’re no longer reserved for make-believe.

Major corporations, like Google, Uber, General Motors (GM), and Tesla are investing billions of dollars in perfecting the concept of self-driving cars, and some are already testing the market. In Pittsburgh, Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group headquarters is already in the process of rolling out several autonomous SUVs to perform short trips around the city and collect data on road and traffic conditions. GM’s self-driving car division, Cruise, is attracting a bevy of investors, such as Honda and Japan’s Softbank, to launch a fleet of Chevy Bolts throughout California and put them toward commercial use by 2020. The race to create a sustainable autonomous vehicle is on, and companies are willing to spend a fortune in hopes of the market returning the favor.


3. Microtransit

Microtransit operations, which work like personalized school buses for the public, are bringing mobility to under-serviced areas through the use of technology. It works by dispatching minibus type vehicles to people requesting rides. Riders meet the vehicle at the designated pick up point, usually in a predefined, geofence, and they set off. As a type of demand response transportation (DRT), successful microtransit uses intelligent systems to gain efficiency and viability. As more intelligent systems amass, microtransit will continue to integrate into everyday mobility.


4. Electric Hybrid Vehicles

Electric cars are the new craze with tons of different car companies launching their versions, but electric hybrid vehicles represent more than just cars.

Another trending movement in mobility is electric hybrid vans, buses, and trains. Since the health of the world demands more considerable attention and care for limiting auto emissions and increasing sustainability, transit options that provide a more exceptional service to the public are a necessity. Proterra, a bus solutions manufacturer throughout North America, offers several electric bus models to metropolitan cities that offer high fuel performance, zero tailpipe emissions, and comfortable experiences. Many countries are developing newer train systems, too, to maintain existing railways with greater efficiency. In Japan, the Maglev train uses electrically charged magnets to create a hover-like connection. Speeds can reach up to 374 miles per hour. It’s expected to go public in 2027.



Other Mobility Trends In Action

The greatest thing about transportation is that the need for it will never go away. As populations grow and areas become denser and spread out, finding affordable and safe transit resources becomes a major dilemma. However, there are plenty of services to alleviate the problem.

Other mobility trends that solve user issues are TNC accessibility programs that offer prearranged mobility services to users in a wide range of locations. The best examples of this are companies like Uber and Lyft that allow riders to order a car within seconds and pick them up on the spot. Other services for short trips are bicycle or scooter programs, like Jump or Byrd, that offer low-cost, quick mobility resources.


The transportation landscape is continually evolving. And with it, so are we. National Express Transit has a dedicated team of experts preparing for emerging trends and implementing mobility solutions that provide value to our riders. Uncover how to integrate technology into your transit operations by clicking below.

Integrating Technology into Transit Ops eBook