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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

EU Transport Vision 2050 might boost Personal Rapid Transit (PRT)

Image: ULTra Ltd.
The European Union announced plans to ban all petrol and diesel powered cars from cities by 2050 in a draconian plan designed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 60 percent.
European Commission, the executive body of the EU, wants 50 percent of Europe’s vehicles to be zero emission by 2030 and conventionally fuelled vehicles to be banned from cities altogether by 2050. The Brussels directives and new taxation of fuel would be used to force people out of their cars and into "alternative" means of transportation, says EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas.
"That means no more conventionally fuelled cars in our city centers," he said. "Action will follow legislation – real action to change behaviour."
The measures could "dramatically reduce Europe's dependence on imported oil and cut carbon emissions in transport by 60% by 2050", says the Commission.
Key goals of the 'Single European Transport Area' (PDF) by 2050 are: no more conventionally fuelled cars in cities; 40% use of low-carbon fuels in aviation; at least a 40% cut in shipping emissions; and a 50% shift of medium distance inter-city passenger and freight journeys from road to rail and water-borne transport.
The plan also says that by 2050 the majority of medium-distance passenger journeys - those above about 300 km (186 miles) - should be by rail.
All core network airports should be connected to the rail network by 2050, with all core seaports "sufficiently connected to the rail freight and, where possible, inland waterway system".
For longer-distance travel, and intercontinental freight, air and sea travel will benefit.

Personal rapid transit (PRT)
Personal rapid transit (PRT), also called personal automated transport (PAT) or podcar, is a public transportation mode featuring small automated vehicles operating on a network of specially-built guide ways. PRT is a type of automated guideway transit (AGT), a class of system which also includes larger vehicles all the way to small subway systems. PRT offers personal, on-demand non-stop transportation between any two points on a network of specially built guide-ways’. A PRT system consists of a number of small automated vehicles (seating 2 to 6 passengers) combining the desirable aspects of the private car (private travel at any desired time) with the social advantages of public transport (no congestion and parking issues).

First Public PRT at London Heathrow Airport

In summer 2011 the first public and commercial PRT system anywhere in the world will open at London’s Heathrow Airport. Commissioned by BAA (formerly the British Airport Authority) the ULTra PRT system comprises some 4 kilometers of guideway and will link one station in Terminal 5 to two remote stations in the Business car park.
ULTra PRT (originally Advanced Transport Systems Ltd) began developing the system in 1995, in association with the University of Bristol. The ULTra system emerged from systematic engineering analysis as the optimum solution to urban transport problems. By 2001, the company had established a 1km test track in Cardiff, where it has conducted trial runs of several generations of PRT vehicles. In 2005, ULTra PRT was chosen to build the system at London's Heathrow Airport.

PRT for the world’s first carbon neutral City

In the heart of Abu Dhabi work has started on the most ambitious sustainable development in the world today. Masdar City will be the world’s first carbon neutral, zero-waste to landfill, car-free city powered entirely by alternative energy sources. Masdar City will be built on six and a half square kilometres and will grow eventually to house 1,500 businesses, 40,000 residents and 50,000 commuters.

There will be no fossil fuel cars within Masdar City. The city will be a pedestrian-friendly environment, with a Personal Rapid Transit system (PRT) available for longer journeys.  The PRT vehicles will travel at speeds up to 40km/h, with the longest routes in the city taking around 10 minutes. Ultimately there will be 3,000 PRT vehicles serving 130,000 trips/day over the 85 stations.

APM-ATS 2011

The 13th International Conference on Automated People Movers and Transit Systems will be held in Paris, Palais des Congrès, from May 22 to 26, 2011.


Rolo said...

The world's first operational and commercial PRT system is realized at Masdar, with the system officially opened on November 28, 2010.

E. Scott Anderson said...

Don't forget about the PRT at West virginia Unversity


Chelsey said...

All core network airports should be connected to the rail network by 2050, with all core seaports sufficiently connected to the rail freight and, where possible, inland waterway system.
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