In the 20th century, transportation was about moving cars. In the 21st century, the transportation landscape is rapidly evolving. New forms of mobility are being deployed even as others are being developed. A century ago with the invention of the car, Departments of Roads were created to deal with this new form of transportation. Those agencies are now Departments of Transportation, having grown to include other modes of transportation. Now those same agencies need to evolve again to provide seamless mobility. Instead of just moving cars, mobility is about moving people, data and freight. Long-existing silos among cities, states, counties, and transit agencies are disappearing. The next generation of mobility is a collaboration of the public and private sectors. More choices exist now, but for consumers to fully realize the benefits of this new world of mobility, it must be easier to choose which option best meets their needs.
The Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America) created the Mobility on Demand (MOD) Alliance to help determine what the future of mobility should look like, striving for a world that is safer, greener and smarter. The MOD Alliance brings public, private, and academic sector stakeholders together to promote the benefits of MOD and address obstacles hindering its development.
ITS America members advising on the formation of the Alliance include Audi, the Central Ohio Transit Authority, Cubic, Econolite, Ford, Kapsch TrafficCom North America, the Michigan DOT, the New York City DOT, the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, the San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission, Washington DC DOT and the Washington State DOT.
Focused on fostering an environment for a scalable, repeatable MOD model that allows for metropolitan and regional differences, the Alliance will: 1) address common challenges including defining terminology, data access, payments systems, accessibility and equity issues, privacy/cybersecurity, and legislative/regulatory outlook; 2) facilitate metropolitan and regional MOD efforts; and 3) educate policymakers and the public about the benefits of MOD.
WHAT IS MOBILITY ON DEMAND?
As defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Mobility on Demand (MOD) is an innovative, user-focused approach which leverages emerging mobility services, integrated transit networks and operations, real-time data, connected travelers, and cooperative Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) to allow for a more traveler-centric, transportation system- of-systems approach, providing improved mobility options to all travelers and users of the system in an efficient and safe manner.
THE FUTURE OF TRANSPORTATION
The MOD Alliance exists to facilitate a transportation ecosystem in which consumers can research, book, and pay for all parts of their daily journeys—no matter the form of transportation (e.g., rideshare/bikeshare, transit, personal vehicles, micromobility, etc.)—on one integrated platform accessible on request. The MOD Alliance is committed to making this consumer-oriented transportation vision a reality for more Americans.
Developing the business, legal, and regulatory conditions for MOD to flourish will better enable consumers to identify and use the transportation options that best meets their needs (e.g., cheapest, fastest, sustainable, private, etc.) at any particular moment. MOD promotes societal benefits such as a less congested, less costly, and more sustainable transportation system. Leveraging the insights gained from MOD data, new business models can be developed to enhance mobility and address unmet transportation needs.