CoMotion LA 2019
Hello and welcome to Monaco. Twenty four the urbanistic the show all about the cities we live in. I'm Andrew Talk coming up on this week's episode report from the Mobility Conference Commotion While it Might Seem Ironic to hold a conference about mobility in the city of Los Angeles a city infamous for its traffic woes. Civic leaders transit authorities and private mobility companies. were out in full swing at road delay last week. Take for the Third Edition of Commotion. What is the mobile revolution? Well it's the biggest revolution that any of us will see in our lifetime. It's it's not like the gas station model. It's a productive. Transportation is the most interesting thing that is changing and communities right now and we have an opportunity to transform it we can look globally and implement locally. We're comfortable in our own skins and we're excited about future those are just some of the highlights of what's what's coming up over the next thirty minutes right here on the urban est with women on the ground in Los Angeles Recognize that sound. It's estimated the average American commuter loses around forty a two hours each year stuck in traffic. I'm not talking about the time. Their commute takes and how long people drive for. This is an estimate of waste time in snarled up traffic. That's an entire full workweek wasted behind the wheel each year and big cities such as New York. Los Angeles is all Washington. DC seem to have it much worse than anywhere else in the country so when it was announced that Mobility Conference Commotion Was Decamping in downtown Los Angeles to discuss micro mobility solutions public transit innovation and the role cities can play in bringing equity to our streets. I I was curious to find out. Just how real these ideas were and what is actually being done in practice to change it commotion. It's we're in our third year. We are bringing together trying to bring together the leaders of the Global Urban Mobility Revolution and what is the mobility revolution. Well it's probably the biggest revolution that any of us will see in our lifetime. That's Genre Sant. He's the founder of commotion. La Our host for today and he's also the founder founder and chairman of the New Cities Foundation. which is devoted to improving the quality of life in cities? He told me a bit. More about the mobility revolution. That's what's happening in our urban environments for last really over one hundred years since Henry Ford started pumping out model ts. Nothing really earliest changed that much. We all moved around in gas guzzling cars the terminal combustion engines or buses or taxis etc.. Everything is changing now. If you just think of the micro mobility revolution just maybe a little less than three years ago. Bird bursts out of nowhere. A A few miles from here in Santa Monica and now today you go to. Every major city in the world has micro ability e scooter options. I was in Paris last week and I think they're twelve different operators on the streets of Paris and it's an amazing way to get around Paris. So we're only at the beginning of this. So if you think in five years time I can guarantee you that when we're meeting at Elliot Commotion. Twenty twenty five. A lot of people will be coming to the event event in robotic electric air-taxis kind of big drones that have the ability to take passengers prediction. Oh yeah there's no question that's coming in. The technology is right there. At our doorstep there's billions and billions of dollars going into the sector around world and urban air mobility will be just another way of getting around cities so instead of hopping into a cab or into to your car. You'll take your Uber Air APP and coal up an electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft. which will come in two minutes? You'll get in and it will deposit where you want. Let's use the argument on the other side. What about people? That are skeptical about that future. And that thing even simple as they don't own a smartphone what's the ability then looks like for the future one issue that we can't forget when we're having all of these intensive discussion here here is the whole question of equity and you know unfortunately our cities particularly in the Western world. I mean if you think of Los Angeles or for San Francisco New York or London or Paris have become cities where the rich live in a part of the city. And then everybody else definitely not as rich. You don't have a kind of equality of opportunity in this country become very very severe. It's a real issue here here. In Los Angeles we have just a couple blocks here we have skid row. We gave that name to the world. There sixty thousand homeless people in Los Angeles so yes they don't have fancy smartphones. They're not going to be calling up. Urban Air PTACS however the promise of new mobility also means that mobility mobility is becoming more accessible if you think of shared mobility option to own a car in the United States between depreciation appreciation insurance cost vehicle gas at Tetra. Cost Minimum's six seven thousand dollars a year. Not Everybody has that kind of money so there are a lot lot of shared mobility options. Now that are much more reasonable you know Mubarak pool to go to work something like that. which is really great in a city which doesn't have of extensive local public transportation options such as Los Angeles to exactly understand a bit better? Some of those challenges Los Angeles is is facing. I caught up with the city's mayor. Eric Garcetti Los Angeles is sort of the future. Capital of the world were a developing world mindset in a developed world city place where challenges are steep but our capacity is maybe unmatched between the universities that we have have here the diverse economy the narrative makers the storytellers as well as the actual doers. The challenges we face are the biggest. The worst traffic in America greatly cleaner but still the worst air in America and the position that we have we're kind of Latin America North America and the Pacific Rim intersex really leap provides us as a great testing ground. And that's what today was about to also offer the city to the world to say test your product test your innovation test your brilliance. See the future today in a city that is the third largest metro economy in the world. That is so much about what Los Angeles is in one people think about the city perhaps even in a wrong way. They've never visited. Mobility is not exactly. It doesn't have executive best reputation as I say. I'm so glad we're number one in so many things whether it's the trade capital of North America whether it's the tourism capital of the United States whether it's the manufacturing capital of America or the entertainment capital of the world but one crown. WE WANNA lose number one one traffic. We want to see how transportation will help us solve housing crisis. And you know Los Angeles doesn't sugarcoat. Its problems but we also are kind of city will you will not see barriers to solutions. You don't have to wait decades and pay your dues. You don't have to be from the right family or come from specific culture here. It's a horizontal city typographically and it's a horizontal city. Socially and you know I think when people come to Los Angeles always surprises them. Because it's like thousand cities in one you'll find your dents downtown you'll find on your sprawling suburban area you'll see your particular countries culture you'll find your people your language or religion but you also see things that you've never seen anywhere in the world collide here the trucks that are around us the whole food truck revolution on twitter started in La when a Korean short ribs Taco was invented with two cultures coming together. And that's the kind of thing we do every single day so I think I always offer. La as a place to see the challenge but also more than that to see the solution of the future now. Of course the next decade okay. There's going to be quite defining line in terms of the big events are coming to the cities and that provides an opportunity in terms to kind of trying to solve so many of these issues as we've been talking about in the one thousand nine hundred. When we had the Olympics eighty four? We really came into our own great global city. I think by two thousand twenty eight. We will prove ourselves to be one of the top five most indispensable global cities place where you see the face of the world today a face at the country tomorrow. And everybody's excited I that goal you know when the world comes to you for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. It's like introducing your future spouses parents to your apartment. You want it to be perfect and you clean it up you take care of it you invest in it. But we're really not looking. I'm just a two and a half weeks during the Olympics. We're looking way beyond that. The next two and a half decades at combating climate change looking at poverty figuring out a way to end homelessness leading the way on resilient cities and as a fan of Monaco. I mean that idea that we can look globally and implement locally is to me what makes L. A.'s so brilliant we're comfortable in our own skins and we're excited about that future now for many cities looking ahead to future of transportation means implementing lanting strategy around smart cities. Ringing in new technologies to help mitigate some of the challenges faced one. Such place is the city of Columbus in Ohio in two thousand sixteen it applied to the US. Department of Transportation's. I ever smart city challenge and emerged as the sole winner being being awarded a fifty million dollar grant to invest in Transportation Jordan. Davis is the director of Smart Columbus and she told me more about some some of the issues the city is facing and how they are trying to solve them. Transportation is the most interesting thing that is changing and communities right now and we have an opportunity to transform it in a way that solves the problems in our community and the problems that were suffering from our economic divides that are rather severe and keeping a lot of our residents from accessing opportunity. But also we are growing faster than we ever have where the number one fastest growing in the commit west and the second largest city in the Midwest. Actually right now and so. We're bigger than we ever have been. So we're experiencing new problems with Urbanism and Growth and we think that transportation could be in the heart of solving that so rather than solving it in traditional ways that we've seen we think we can Dan leverage technology and data to do it differently. And maybe faster so we're looking at how transportation's becoming more connected. self-driving shared word electric. And how this can work as a service for our residents but also what's the role of data and keeping it healthy and growing and secure so we have everything from connected vehicle pilot were deploying hundred seventy four intersections of connected vehicle environment type technology will connect about twelve hundred vehicles in our community. To address safety and mitigate congestion we have deployed a self driving shuttle. I we did it in in downtown. And then we're taking it to a low income neighborhood in the first quarter of next year to solve for the first mile last mile challenge from the shared mobility ecosystem. Were doing things to strategically position public transit as the backbone of our ecosystem. So we've done a complete transit system redesign of our bus system Tom we've upgraded to mobile fare payment including Wifi. And then we're adding onto that a integrated seamless multi-modal trip planning and payment application. Are we just released in August. That allows the resident to plan book and pay for a trip across multiple modes from scooters to buses to TNC's and and then we have a whole effort to grow the electric vehicle market and then we built our own operating system to manage data as well. There's only only one system is called the city and there's only one transport system in a city. It's only the separation of the transport systems is artificial if if you put yourself from a citizen perspective. It's one system. It's one road which is used by buses. Buy Cars Bicycles with you. Have streetlights when you have to post signs. It's only one road. It's one track no matter what is operator and we have to think the system as one and bring together or the actors or order regulators or the suppliers to improve its efficiency. Make it better for city support the economy and make it more sustainable. That what's Silvain. How on he's the director of strategy for the International Association of Public Transports? This organization brings together urban and public transport on sports stakeholders from across the world including public transport operators or authorities manufacturers and now new mobility players to that's east scooters for you and I as we caught up in between sessions that commotion. Sylvan told me how he believes. That's the traditional definition of public transit is being redefined and has now gone way beyond busses trains and subways the transport systems. He's about going going from one place to another. It's not about going on one road taking one night. It's going home to work to the school to the Jim. Thirty transport can provide backbone of the transport system in the city to move the bulk of the people around but the last what we call the last night the last five hundred meters may not be possible to be done with the bus. Always the train. Obviously and that's where we think there is a place for on on demand transports heavy seas for shared scooters bike share. I know the mode of transport the first of them being the oldest one's walking working in cycling by the way do you feel like that's one of the issues as well for example looking at Los Angeles. You just mentioned walking and cycling. It is a city that he for example as as much as there are initiatives to try to encourage people. It's not twenty people immediately. Think of when they think about mobility and how to get to a place. How do you change mindsets I would say you have three key elements? The first one is the toughest one. It's the city. The city create the conditions and by city. I mean the physical infrastructure physical urban environment. It creates a condition to make cycling walking possible of Courses City with so much as Sanjay's big highways in the center of the city. It makes it more difficult so you have to work. On the physical infrastructure you have to work on St Design to create the Coalition for people to walk or cycle. The second part is make sure you give Kuraray to cycling working and Public Transport so that you reduce place the physical space given to private cars and can you give more space. More is to move around to the other modes and the particular active transport and its third element is a need to create incentives incentive for for sustainable urban transport solutions and these incentives for the private car. And that's about parking policy. Parking fees charging for the use of the road. Frustrate chair so you need three laments for comprehensive policy to Anchorage Alternative to going around with your own car and being stuck in traffic and and this is an opinion that is also shared by Jordan Davis from Smart Columbus. Here she is again you have to ask can private mobility be solvent solvent like Kansas. Actually make money and in its effort to make money. Does it actually meet the goals of public transit and can they coexist. Oh exists or do they need to merge and I think that's the question that all the city's grappling so if scooters are there to make money because their private business but they also need to be equitable notable. Do those things kind of run in competition with each other and for us we think that the ecosystem needs to be integrated interoperable in order under to give the largest amount of choice for a resident but the relationship of do these things become public services. I think is still yet to be determined. Ironically ironically we are still in pilot mode you know even from a private market perspective like Willis. Scooter stay around. You know. We had cargo in our community are very fortunate to have them before we had really made a commitment to the space for five years given some company decisions they exited the market will really left a a lot of residents without their main mode of transportation. And that's a possible scenario for scooters if they don't become a successful business so I think that yes yes on demand services are absolutely the future and how does it become public service. Is the question for us. We are doing first mile last mile on demand service invest through our actual public transit authorities so their vehicles their drivers and then via is the software provider behind it and so they're providing in low cost rides for residents in a certain neighborhood to get to a transit centre or somewhere in the geofencing area. And so that's changing public transit tremendously. Yeah now how do we bring any other. Private companies is really the question a company that is trying to change the way we literally access public transit. That is the way we pay. Hey for a ticket is Musabe I caught up with its head of partnerships. Nick Cardy leak. You just read platform is built to allow people to you pay for and receive secure dynamic ticketing for their public transport on their mobile phone and this is achieved by single platform for all agencies. He's globally where we can incorporate any products and fair types for that agency and offer them through an APP download an APP store or through third party application which is not wait. Lap such as we do with Uber and Denver or transit APP in many locations through our software developer kit and so are sort. The basic goal is to make accessing and utilizing public transport as seamless and easy as possible for the writer. We all have to get through our day. The more steps. It's in the process. The more difficult it is sometimes the more likely we might be to take another option so simpler and more streamlined. Your journey can be the more likely you are to upside public transport now as someone that used to live in London and that I'm so used to sometimes even just leaving my wallet at home and I can do everything with my phone in terms of traveling and whatnot moving to the. US Dot proved to be a challenge in some places but it makes me question even if for me this seems like the ideal solution deletion. What about people? That might not have access to a smartphone. Are you suggesting it should replace all systems or just streamline it for people that tend to use this no no in fact we refer to ourselves mobile. I not mobile only because we know that all writers need to have access to public transport and some people including the UNE Bankcorp. They just prefer not to use their mobile phone for these types of transactions should have equal rights to access transport so we do currently provide full-fat collection solutions which which are again mobile first but we do install vending machines. We integrate with gate lines. We provide for digitizing cash. We provide for fertilize TAP cards. So that people with any kind of entitlement might be able to tap into a bus or other vehicles. Such as for instance in Fort Collins wins all students at University of Colorado can get onto the bus and validated with their student. Id through the platform to NFC card. All veterans can access public transport for free using their veteran's affairs. ID and so. We don't mind what the token is. We just want to be able to provide through our back end. The most seamless way for persons. What they've got in their pocket to access public transport simpler? You make this system more people you'll convert to actually use public transit and perhaps apps did you know that the first instinct is to call a ridesharing platform whatever instead of that. If this processes made simpler they will eventually revert to using in public transit more. Well what I think is people will always do. What's best for themselves? And that's what we want them to do. But utilizing transport really is. What's best for you if you can access I sit easily and if it's going where you want to tell if it's cost effective and better for the environment and all your other choices in the end of the day it's the best way to move around the city so so this is why we've integrated with Uber who have fully installed our platform in their application through our software developer kit for city? We deployed that solution. And so you can now. Oh by public transport ticketing in the UBER APP is in Denver. We have only been live for maybe six months. But I know that we've sold something along the lines of twenty or thirty two thousand public transport tickets in the UBER APP. And what that means is that somebody opened up that application to get a car and instead they were offered public transport and chosen. This is behavior change and we know from our data that this did not take any chunk out of our regular user base so these were new users. People are making choices for themselves based on. What's best for them? But what if you want to change the way. People travel in cities not three public transit but by convincing car owners to trade their regular car for an electric one. Instead but part of that change in mentality comes with the access to charging stations. Louis Tremblay Eh is the CEO of add energy and also flow the largest charging network in Canada. We started by talking about the fact that for many skeptics optics access to charging stations seems to be the main sticking point. Everybody has the range anxiety. Everybody are wondering before they buy a car right where I'm going to charge but what happened when you start to use your car. It's that you figure out that it's not like the gas station model. It's a paradigm shift so all of the sudden you don't go somewhere to charge everywhere you bark unique to charge every morning you leave your home and your fully church so it's really about a game changer. Like your mobile or your laptop. You don't go somewhere to plug your laptop everywhere you go you blood. There's no range exciting when you start to use the electric vehicle but it is is important for. I would say minicipal these city to understand that reality and make sure that charging is available. People need it. Do you have difficulties these are. Is it a challenge to get cities to understand that I would send no city as are open because they wanna make sure that this happen. So we're there to provide the data because we over it so many chargers. We can l. them to understand to installed busy charger so charger where people will need. You know use them as is there working nearby and they need to charge overnight. People live in multi unit dwelling. That can use it during the night so we can have really busy charger. But if the city wants more than padding busy charger but one win stall charger everywhere across like a CD like elite to make sure that everyone accessed whether dependable charging service people leaving being in Condo apartment which has a lot of people here in La so we need to make sure we put chargers everywhere so people feel comfortable and then they will switch to electric and used. WHO's the leader deployment? which did use the curbside charger charge overnight because they don't have a parking where can recharge it's only on the curb so as it then The concept here that if you make it and make it simple people will use it. As long as it's available it will be easier to convince people to switch the type of vehicle that the US yet again back to the laptop and cell phone example. You know it's about freedom you know if you understand how the electric vehicle work you will appreciate it more silenced. Acceleration is great and it simply to us and there's charging everywhere so why not making the switch but people have to understand you know all the benefits of the electric car before they get confident. But we're there to make it simple for them before wrap-up of the Sears Commotion Ocean La. I also had the chance to speak to Amanda Aurora the Managing Director of Planet M This is mobility initiative of the State of Michigan which helping companies access the mobility ecosystem. She started by telling me more about the city of Detroit and how it's mobility revolution is quietly quietly. Moving along. The city of Detroit footprint is very large much larger than what people realize we only have about maybe eight hundred thousand residents however the footprint print is equivalent to Manhattan Boston in San Francisco. So if you could imagine there's a lot of empty space with a limited number of residents that exists there today so some of the challenges. Oranges are just having areas in the city in which we are trying to provide access to public transit first mile solutions. So we've actually launched a particular pilot to solve of some of that in one particular neighborhood called the Osborne neighborhood on the east side of Detroit. The pilot itself I think is interesting. Starts to help define some of the challenges. But it's called car for you. It's being led by General Motors on there maven platform with that. What we discovered is that many detroiters are une banked and many perhaps maybe they you have a smartphone but don't have a data plan to be able to access the maven platform and so what we did? Was We partner with a community center. We plays two of them even vehicles there at a discounted rate so it includes insurance the other thing to note about Detroit and Michigan currently we have the highest car insurance rate in the United States. City of Detroit is even worse. So there's a very low personal car car ownership so a lot of challenges with mobility in the city of Detroit so with these two vehicles in partnership with a community center at a discounted rate it includes insurance that includes your fuel and you can go into the community beauty center to actually rent out the vehicle without having to have a credit card and without having to have a smartphone so that is gentleman launched a couple of months ago so we're still collecting a lot of data on that. But it's just one way. Hey that we're trying to solve some of the specific challenges that are unique to Detroit. Just like what we heard earlier from Louis. Klay of Adeniji and flow. The the state of Michigan also sees electric vehicles as the way forward for mobility and educating the public is a big part of making it happen. Here's Amanda Manda again. As part of project we have a second pilot that's launch. It's called charged with a couple of defer to trade at the end and essentially. It's Detroit's first fast chargers but it wasn't just just about charging. It's all about eve education outreach in helping to you know hopefully get michiganders' to embrace this idea of electrification in the future. So what we did was. We didn't just put these charges off somewhere off to the side. We actually put them in a very dense area as part of the city. So there's several pocket parks in the downtown and midtown part of Detroit. We selected one of those. We put these four charges adjacent to the park where there's tons of programming and application through group called downtown Detroit Partnership Partnership and so the idea really. There is that somebody would come on down charge very quickly. Maybe within thirty minutes while they're there and it's a two hour parking limit so still still trying to figure out the whole balance of how do you pay for parking and paper charging so. Unfortunately we haven't cracked that nut yet so we haven't been able to streamline that but we're not we haven't given up and then the idea is it will help drive economic development. They'll be programming in the park as well so we partner with a couple organizations that are working on developing some programming so that will be the second case. Study that we're just starting to right now now and then. We will package all of this together as a white paper really to help other cities so can and should cities fully embrace micro mobility solutions. And in the meantime. How do we make our streets safer? Here's John Roseanne of commotion. La Wants more more and more people are biking more and more people are going around by scooter. And so there's much more of a popular pressure. Now which is where democracy and politicians who run the city here the voters. I think there's more of public clamor for this type of thing the same time. One of the problems is people who own cars ars have been extremely entitled we subsidize Massively Car Culture by our tax dollars goes to new in keeping streets and street lights freeways and things like that and they feel very a title so I mean some Angelenos talked to feel the same way about their cars that you know Oklahomans feel about their guns and it's become kind of a second amendment issue away we have a constitutional right guard to our gas guzzling cars. That no one's GonNa take it away from us. A lot of people feel that way. I think it's a generational. Yeah I mean there's clearly you know my kids. They like driving around car. But it's not the be all end. All they have a completely different attitude due to ownership. You know whether it's a car anything else. So they get the sharing economy in a very fundamental way. So things are changing. It's this question for Monaco in Los Angeles. I'm Carl Tarabella. That's all for this edition of the Urban Est.. Today's episode was produced by Colors Rabelo from Los Angeles and edited by David. Stevens from Zurich. What am I bought team they are now? It's pay you out of this week's episode. Who else is that lever with? locomotion thank you for listening. City lovers to give than Obama. Did it it. Why not take a wonder into the wonderful world of Monaco? With an annual print subscription. You'll receive ten issues of the magazine. A year plus are seasonal specials. 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