Micro terminals - a sustainable solution to urban logistics?
The subject of urban freight distribution has received increasing attention as more people settle in urban areas. Traditionally seen as an essential foundation for the modern society, freight transports have provided urban areas with the necessities needed for its subsistence. Nevertheless, with a growing dependency on fossil fuels and an increasing number of vehicles to distribute goods, questions have recently been raised about its sustainability. In order to meet these challenges, the industry have proposed a number of innovative ways to mitigate the problems. This paper aims to investigate the scope and viability for one of these concepts called a micro terminal. Through an exploratory case study this platform has been evaluated against two other methods of urban distribution. Primary data have also been collected from central stakeholders engaged in urban freight distribution in order to explore if this type of initiative is feasible from a planning and business point of view. The findings revealed the concept of a micro terminal performs relatively well compared to other distribution approaches, but that a successful implementation is highly affected by local pre-conditions and the ability of stakeholders agree on measures needed.
MSc in Logistics and Transport Management