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Workshop Paper / Transport

4th Florence Urban Transport Forum Summary – Sustainable Urban Mobility: A Case for Regulation?

Author(s): FINGER Matthias, BERT Nadia, LIU Yening

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This document summarises the content of the presentations delivered during the 4th European Urban Transport Regulation Forum "Sustainable Urban Mobility: A Case for Regulation?" as well as the ensuing discussion. This report is divided in two sections: a synthesis of the debates and the summaries of the presentations.

Presentations were delivered by representatives of many different types of stakeholders, who reacted to the introductory questions put forward by Prof. Finger on what extent and what level sustainable urban public transport should become a matter of regulation. Associations, operators, representatives of city governments, public transport authorities, industry representatives, as well as knowledgeable academics engaged in the discussion with one representative of the European Commission, and they offered their view on the state and challenges of sustainability at the urban level. Discussion was based on the following initial questions:

- Sustainable Urban Mobility: New challenges or a new label for old problems?

- Are legal requirements on fuels, air quality and pollutants simplifying or complicating the organisation of public transport?

- Are ‘access restriction schemes’ a suitable tool to promote green transport? Are there best practices, which should be harmonised and followed across Europe?

- How can urban public transport contribute to the Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMP)? And can the SUMP contribute to increase the modal share of urban public transport?

The 4th European Transport Regulation Forum assessed the challenges of multi-level governance in the realm of urban transport policies, from the EU level initiative of SUMPs to the local scale access restriction schemes. The main goal of the Forum was identify whether urban public transport should be regulated differently and, if so, how. Both the vertical relationship among European-, national- and local- administrative levels and the horizontal interaction among different types of public and private stakeholders have been taken into consideration.

Thanks to the presentation of specific case studies in a wider analytical framework, the discussion went through the comparison of different experiences, highlighting the need for confrontation and cooperation among stakeholders. In particular, a call for more thorough attention of the political level to the citizens’ real needs in the field of urban transport emerged.