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Presentation of the SUMP approach

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Designing and implementing a suitable e-mobility strategy is a complex task that usually involves different levels of decision-making, various stakeholders, multiple fields of expertise that are combined to create, agree on, and deliver a common vision.

Luckily, there is a tool that many of you are already familiar with: the “Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan” (SUMP) that the European Union has helped develop and that is increasingly becoming the leading approach to mobility planning in Europe.

Let’s quickly look at how this tool works, then we will cover the “plug-in” that has been developed for e-mobility as part of SUMPs.

What is a SUMP?

SUMP is basically a detailed project management methodology applied to sustainable mobility. It has numerous advantages for policy-makers: it provides a roadmap that covers all aspects of mobility planning, combines actionable recommendations and best practices, it is detailed and exhaustive so that it can be used by people with lower experience in project management. It standardizes the approach across European cities, allowing for comparison between places, but also giving enough flexibility to be adjusted for each local context.

SUMP 12 stages of urban planning

Concretely, the SUMP cycle consists of four main phases. All four phases of the cycle start and end with a milestone.

Phase Purpose
1. Preparation and analysis Analyse the mobility situation of your functional urban area from the perspective of all transport modes and relevant sustainability aspects by using an appropriate set of data sources. Expected milestone: analysis of major problems and opportunities in the functional urban area.
2. Strategy development Define the strategic direction for the SUMP and the vision for the future of mobility, based on tangible scenarios and a clear link between the problem identified and the proposed solutions. Expected milestone: vision, objectives and targets agreed.
3. Measure planning Develop and validate an implementation plan with measures that best contribute to meeting objectives and targets, broken down into actionable tasks, with timelines, budgets, risks, interdependencies, etc. Financial plan to be added as well. Expected milestone: SUMP adopted by the relevant decisions-makers.
4. Implementation and monitoring Responsible entities to plan technical details of their actions, undertake implementation and provide goods and services. Systemic monitoring to identify bottlenecks and take corrective measures. On-going communication with public and stakeholders. Expected milestone: measure implementation evaluated.

This underlines how important it is to see electrification as a mean to an end and only as part of a wider strategy with different solutions.

Check out the online SUMP self-assessment tool to assess the quality of a specific strategic mobility plan, and to evaluate planning activities in general.

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Electrification of Urban Mobility: How to Get it Right

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