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While EU Green Week may be coming to a close, UITP is keeping the wheels moving with its latest release: the rail success stories Report! Let’s keep the momentum going by providing practical examples of how rail benefits the people, the planet and the economy.
Rail transport provides a safe, reliable, cheap and environmentally friendly service to travellers all around the world. It connects cities and regions sustainably, allowing users to reach their destinations within or across urban areas. As we heard at last month’s IT TRANS event, the latest advances in technology constitute a great opportunity for the rail sector to deliver more tailored approaches and efficient services to users with evolving demands.
While a lot still needs to be done to fully adapt to these new challenges , the purpose of the ‘Rail Success Stories’ report is to share positive and successful examples of rail service development in cities, metropolitan areas and regions worldwide. The publication showcases how rail continues to contribute to the improvement of quality of life for citizens, boosts economies and supports cities in their fight against climate change.
It is impressive the number of stories we received from UITP members, on multiple topics: from automation to the fight against terrorism; from digitalisation of processes and services to diversity and inclusion initiatives. In showing policy makers how truly crucial rail is for green and sustainable mobility, we need to celebrate and share the benefits of rail, so the sector can learn from and even replicate these successful approaches for reaching the ambitious goal of becoming the backbone of the mobility system of the present and the future.
The examples presented in the Report show the disruptive potential rail can have in shaping the future of the transport system; be it metro, light rail or regional and suburban railways. It also showcases how similar challenges have been tackled and successfully overcome in different places, acting as a collection of recommendations and lessons learnt for those who want to replicate similar initiatives, delivering excellence in the services to customers, citizens, commuters and societies at large.
Frankfurt’s public transport provider, Verkehrsgesellschaft Frankfurt am Main (VGF), wanted to tackle their rising carbon dioxide levels and improve local biodiversity. Based on an internal idea from an employee, they planted vegetation of the roof of a tram stop and installed digital signage, providing information of nearby mobility. Through a public awareness and social media campaign, the overwhelming public support led to them building green rooves on all new tram and bus stops and they are also testing the usage of solar panels.
Beijing’s MTR Corporation wanted to promote healthy commuting by improving the passenger travel experience with green travel alternatives. Several initiatives have promoted movement, such as “M-Sports”, “Let’s walk and talk” and “Stairway climbing check-in”. Through promotions and social media campaigns, the public got involved and the campaign launch received 31.1 million viewers on the live stream! One challenge even reached 220,000 participants!
What is interesting to see throughout the rail success stories report is how the rail sector is educating people on the benefits of train travel, gaining public acceptance and, quite literally, getting them on board! The success of the rail sector, and why it keeps on growing worldwide, is due its innovative and resilient nature.
All the following stories are shortened versions. To see the full stories, UITP members can access the extensive report on MyLibrary.