U-TURN Research project: identification of new strategies for urban food transport
Population growth, congestion and environmental damage alongside increased use of convenience stores and the home delivery of Internet purchased groceries are challenging the traditional methods of food logistics. U-TURN will identify new models for urban food transportation to bring about environmental and societal benefits.U-Turn is designed to contribute to our understanding of freight distribution in urban areas, addressing the special requirements of food transportation. It will develop and propose innovative business models from a new focused toolkit to achieve more efficient operations – both environmentally and economically. By analysing existing freight urban flows and identifying synergies that can be exploited by logistics sharing and collaboration strategies, the work will bring forward practical options for communities and operators.
These will arise through comparative analysis based on actual market data, simulation experimentation and pilot execution in four different countries: Germany, UK, Italy and Greece. The results of the research project will include a “smart” transport matching tool that will operate on a collaboration platform, a simulation tool and an economic assessment model to compare the base case with the forecast outcomes.
The project partners are: SimPlan AG, Athens University, Technische Universität Dortmund and Cranfield University as well as INTRASOFT International SA, Barilla G. e R. Fratelli, TRT Transport and Territory, LCP Consulting and OPTILOG.
SimPlan’s tasks in the research project will be the development and testing of simulation models as well as the support of pilot studies via simulation. To achieve this, SimPlan will develop a simulation environment and use it to test various scenarios of how logistics resources can be used and combined in innovative ways when transporting food in urban areas. The simulation environment, based on SimChain, a tool developed by SimPlan, will be part of the collaboration platform and help analyse diverse networks and transport options.