Solent Transport awards Trafi, Unicard and BIT a £2.4m contract to provide it’s MaaS scheme
Lithuanian-based Trafi has been appointed to deliver the first MaaS (Mobility-as-a-Service) scheme in the Solent Region, in collaboration with Unicard and BIT. Led by Trafi, the consortium will develop an app designed to make travel across the region easier, more accessible and more efficient.
The £2.4m contract, awarded by Solent Transport, a partnership between the councils of the Isle of Wight, Hampshire County, Portsmouth and Southampton, aims to make it easier to deliver new mobility services to 1.3 million people across the region, which includes Portsmouth, Southampton, South Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Solent Transport’s future transport zone (FTZ) is supported by £28.8m funding from the Department for Transport, in line with broader UK Government investment policies designed to modernise local transport networks. The MaaS app also aims to shape elements of how other FTZ’s, local authorities and commercial operators, provide transport services in the future.
By deploying Trafi’s solution and unifying the various modes of transport available from Unicard in the region, as well as the systems behind them, Solent Transport believes it will be able to maximise the positive impact of access to travel on such activities as employment opportunities and sustainable transport.
Founded in 2013 in Lithuania, Trafi is active in over 30 cities across five continents, facilitating over 3 million journeys daily. Martynas Gudonavičius, CEO of Trafi, commented, “We’re proud to be powering the UK’s first multi-city Mobility-as-a-Service scheme with Trafi technology. Everybody who lives or travels through the Solent region will benefit from the variety of transport services being integrated, including ferry connections. The Solent Transport MaaS project is unique for its focus on researching how best to encourage behaviour change, and usher in a new era for mobility in the UK; one that is fully aligned with our goal of creating convenient and sustainable transport alternatives to private cars.”
The project aims to understand and analyse the real impact of the product on travel behaviour and tackle challenges of access to transport, congestion, air quality and associated health risks. Along with BIT, the Universities of Portsmouth and Southampton will help analyse data on travel patterns, with data collected throughout the project to enable the positive impacts of the new MaaS scheme to be quantified, potentially applied to other regions, and provide insight into the impact of Trafis platforms.
Transport Minister Trudy Harrison said: “From making it easier for local residents to access transport to easing congestion and improving air quality, innovation in transport is vital, which is why Solent Transport’s Future Transport Zone has the backing of this Government. I’m excited to see how this app could change the way people in the local area travel, making our journeys easier, cleaner and more efficient.”
A version of the product is expected to be ready for use by the public by autumn this year. The app will include: a journey planner; a ticketing and payment system; smartcard integration; incentives for car drivers to switch to more sustainable modes of transport via a carbon footprint calculation; and in-app communication with users including research surveys on MaaS impact as part of the partnership with BIT.