1. Consultative Meeting on Freight Smart Cities - 2nd July 2021, 15:00 to 17:30 hrs
A consultative meeting was held with States to discuss the importance of logistics in cities and the development of Freight Smart Cities to enhance freight movement while reducing congestion, improve living conditions and minimising environmental impact.
Presentations were made by School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi (Dr. Sanjay Gupta) on technical institution in India with expertise on City Logistics to enable the aspiring cities to seek the right technical support in preparation of the City Logistics Plans. Presentations were also made by UMTC (Ms. Shruti Mahajan) giving an overview on the national sustainable urban freight guidelines, GIZ (Indo German Development Cooperation) – Mr Laghu Parashar on the concept of Freight Smart Cities, Rocky Mountain Institute (Ms Akshima Ghate) on city logistics measures for implementation.
State governments also shared their inputs on initiatives and actions being undertaken. This included presentation from; Gujarat (Gujarat Infrastructure Development Board) on the ongoing work to improve freight logistics in cities of Vadodara, Surat, Ahmedabad including setting up of transport nagar, coordination committees, use of EVs etc.; Hyderabad (Hyderabad Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority) on the development of City Mobility Plans and integration of freight transportation in their City Mobility Plans; Himachal Pradesh (Shimla Municipal Corporation) on the measures undertaken like shifting of Sabzi mandi, building a new transport nagar, anaj mandi etc.; Goa (Corporation of the City of Panjim) on the actions taken like a multi-stakeholder working group with representation from public and private agencies and development of base line report on urban freight; Kerala (Kochi Metropolitan Transport Authority - KMTA) on establishment of KMTA as the city’s umbrella body for transport and formation of an urban freight committee to integrate, plan and replicate urban freight as a part of urban mobility and development.
A handbook on “Enhancing Urban Freight Systems” was released on the occasion. This contains 14 suggested measures for quick-wins like developing peri-urban freight centres, night-time deliveries, developing truck routes, using intelligent transportation systems & modern technologies, promoting electrification of urban freight, parcel delivery terminals etc.
In his address, subsequent to the release of the Handbook and the webpage on freight smart cities, the chief guest, the Hon’ble Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Shri Hardeep Singh Puri, emphasized on the thrust needed for ‘logistics and freight planning’ as part of City Mobility Planning and the need to move on from the traditional response of imposing restrictions to a more planned approach in City Logistics. He requested states to nominate cities and setup institutional mechanism with all stakeholders as first steps to undertake development of Freight Smart cities. He also emphasized upon the need for close coordination between central/state govts and the private sector in this endeavour. He mentioned that a start should be made by an assessment of growth trajectory of the cities and make freight planning accordingly in consonance with the city master plans and mobility plans. This he mentioned, must be taken up in partnership with expert organisations.
2. Meeting with Academic Institutes on 5th May 2021
Cities, at the core of urban freight movement and contributing to over 63% of India’s GDP, will need to identify interventions and conduct careful planning that can make the urban logistics more efficient and cleaner. These interventions should balance the competing objectives of delivering goods with lower costs and maximum reliability, while minimizing the negative impacts on the urban fabric. If successfully implemented, sound urban logistics interventions can support a dynamic urban economy while preserving a clean, healthy and safe environment.This effort by the government will require a collaborative approach from various stakeholders involved in the urban logistics.
An important stakeholder group comprises of academic institutions and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), which can provide capacity building and technical support directly to identified cities. Such institutions will be able to convene various urban stakeholders and ensure all perspectives are incorporated in city logistics planning. Their expertise and knowledge will aid city governments in formulating successful freight policies. To support this goal of enhancing the urban logistics systems in Indian cities, various distinguished academic institutions and CSOs are invited for a collaborative workshop.
The key objectives of the meeting were :
- Set a shared vision for the Freight Smart Cities scheme between the government and the institutions
- Understand the capacities of institutions with regards to their work on urban freight issues
- Gauge the interest of the institutions in supporting the cities with capacity building and technical assistance with respect to efficient urban freight measures
- Identify group of institutional champions who will collaborate with for implementation of the Scheme
3. National Workshop with States on 19th Jan 2021
For developing an integrated and efficient logistics ecosystem in the country, much of the action lies in the cities - this is where the first and last mile operations of supply chains take place. Cities therefore need to develop supply chain awareness so that in due course, rather that regulating / restricting freight flows around times and locations of congestion, they ‘plan for freight flows’ – existing and future. If this is done, benefits will be reaped not only by city stakeholders but the entire economy, as we cut our logistics costs and integrate with global supply chains.
Planning for city logistics would essentially involve: mapping the current state of commodity flows and existing logistics infrastructure, understanding current bottlenecks and choke points, mapping future commodity flows, and preparing comprehensive City Logistics Plans. Key focus areas for City Logistics could be – (a) leveraging automation and digital interventions to increase logistics efficiency, (b) promoting Transit Oriented Development for optimally locating logistics facilities, (c) adopting sustainable logistics practices to ensure minimal impact on environment, (d) introducing city-level ranking to assess the performance based on the initiatives undertaken with respect to city logistics plans. The Logistics division is exploring partnership opportunities with Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) to leverage synergies for joint development and implementation of the city logistics plans.
As on date, no upcomming event.