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With all work packages now underway, June 17th was a perfect day for the next consortium meeting. Vervoerregio Amsterdam hosted a successful and insightful day, allowing researchers and partners to review early results, discuss potential hurdles, and plan the way forward.

To create more liveliness and interaction, the day started at the World Trade Center in Amsterdam. Jaap Brouwer, the main city designer of Amsterdam, presented the vision for the Zuidas, using a large model to illustrate the area’s challenges and solutions related to mobility. This was followed by a walkabout through the Zuidas area.

Attendees then enjoyed a car-free ride on the Zuid-North metro line to the Vervoersregio Amsterdam Offices. Bart van Arem, XCARCITY’s Project Leader, kicked off the Consortium Meeting by welcoming everyone and underlining the importance of the gathering. The Consortium Meeting serves as a platform to share progress, connect partners with Use Cases, and bring theory into practice.

Inspiration and general updates
Sacha Stolph, Director of Innovation for the Future Proof Assets Program of the City of Amsterdam, started the day with an inspirational yet alarming presentation on climate change and its impact on cities like Amsterdam. Jennifer Faber from NWO engaged attendees with a pop quiz on the program report. Bart van Arem highlighted successes, noting all PhD positions have been filled, international cooperation with Japan SIP development of the Smart Mobility Platform, and the startup of the digital twin federation.

Bart ended the morning session with a celebration: XCARCITY’s first birthday!

Work package updates and different digital twins

After lunch, Carla Robb hosted an interactive quiz where the researchers were given the floor to update the consortium on the progress of the work packages and their research ideas, including:
– Sharing input on the optimisation of indicators
– The impact of sensor locations for KPI predictions
– The development of business models to make multi model service successful with crowdfunding
– Insight into the elements that create perceived safety for cyclists
– Discussing the links between hub locations and the design of car free areas, as well as links between multi modal traffic management and user behavior
– Considering privacy aspects of citizens while monitoring traffic flow
– Looking at car free policies and KPIS when considering Digital Twins

Maaike Snelder took the stage to provide a short presentation on the various digital twins in XCARCITY: from eXtended Reality (XR), to the Urban Mobility Digital Twin and TNO’s Digital Twining Platform, this session provided a great leverage point for the Use Case Market Place to begin.

The participants were divided into three groups linked to XCARCITY use cases: Almere Pampus, Amsterdam Zuidas, and MRDH Barendrecht.

  • Almere Pampus, led by Paolo Huijding, explored urbanization scenarios and their impact on mobility.
  • Barry Ubbels and Maarten Peters guided the Zuidas session, focusing on mobility transition and new decision-making tools
  • MRDH Barendrecht, hosted by Lobke Zandstra and Patrick van Norden, discussed the look and feel of car-low areas and their impact on quality of life.

The marketplace created an opportunity for the municipality, researchers and partners to collaborate with their expertise on these pressing issues, and help to tackle the real challenges faced when designing car low areas across varying scales in the Netherlands. 

Maaike Snelder hosted a ‘physically’ interactive session on the XCARCITY Impact Plan., asking participants to identify their roles on the printed out blocks of the Impact plan. From area developers, mobility service providers and governmental bodies, creative insights and new ideas emerged, with discussions on ensuring program results translate into policies.

The day concluded with a speed dating session between researchers and partners, fostering collaboration on research problems and real-life challenges. The event ended on a high note with many new connections made during the borrel. 

We look forward to seeing everyone at the XCARCITY Design Session in November!