T he goal of this project, which started in July, 2010, with support from the Singapore National Research Foundation, is to develop, in and beyond Singapore, a new paradigm for the planning, design and operation of future urban mobility systems. Such systems, aimed at both passengers and freight, will materially enhance sustainability and societal well-being on a global scale. This is a particularly opportune time to address this topic due to a confluence of relevant developments: advances in computing, communications, and sensing technologies; the great progress that has been made in recent years in our ability to model, evaluate and optimize urban mobility systems; the growing importance of environmental sustainability issues; the aging of physical infrastructure in developed countries and the need for massive new infrastructure in less developed ones; and the vast economic stimulus that can be provided by the modernization and renewal of urban mobility systems worldwide.

Singapore offers an ideal environment for the proposed research. In addition to being, in general, one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world, Singapore already has in place a very advanced urban transportation system as well as one of the most complete suites of sustainable mobility policies, regulations and practices. Moreover, many outstanding collaborators for this project work in Singapore's universities and public agencies and are a most valuable resource.



At the heart of the research effort is SimMobility, a simulation platform with an integrated model of human and commercial activities, land use, transportation, environmental impacts, and energy use. This modeling engine will be linked with a range of networked computing and control (NCC) technology-enabled mobility innovations, and with operations research-based decision models, to analyze the impacts of various novel concepts, including real-time information and management systems, and innovative mobility services such as "mobility-on-demand," and "green logistics." Various innovative urban mobility concepts will be evaluated with simulation-based experiments using SimMobility and through physical experiments.

Organizationally, the project will be structured around three pillars, designed to advance the state-of-the-art in critical areas:

  • Pillar 1: "Technology for Future Urban Mobility" will seek to develop a framework of common, re-usable services, algorithms, and devices, packaged as software libraries, run-time software infrastructure, and embedded systems for urban mobility systems---ranging from sensor networks and cloud computing, to autonomy and driver assistance.
  • Pillar 2: "Integrated modeling and optimization of mobility, land-use, environmental, and energy-use impacts" will develop a suite of powerful demand estimation, performance prediction and operation optimization tools, drawing on the availability of technology-enabled information.
  • Pillar 3: "Performance assessment and urban planning" will enable more meaningful evaluation of alternative sustainability mobility systems and the development of institutional, regulatory, and pricing mechanisms to support them.

More details about the ongoing research can be found in the Projects page.


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