What new modes of transportation for getting around the city?

Urban mobility is constantly evolving, and new modes of transportation are emerging to meet environmental and social challenges. Traditional modes of transport such as the car are increasingly being questioned, in order to change our mobility practices; new modes of transport are multiplying to offer alternative and sustainable solutions to urban travel. Why is the context favorable to urban mobility? And what innovations exist for our urban travel?

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New modes of transportation in cities

In addition to improving public transport services to increase their accessibility, new policies are focusing on more environmentally friendly mobility in urban areas. In this way, new forms of locomotion have appeared.

The electric car, a real ally for city life

Initially considered a fashion phenomenon, electric vehicles have become an increasingly popular alternative for urban travel. They offer an ecological solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and allow for quieter and less polluting mobility. Electric car rental services have started to develop in many French cities, offering a practical and ecological alternative to car travel.

There are now different types of electric cars: battery-powered, but also fuel cell (although the latter is not yet popular on the market, as explained by its recent appearance). There are also the famous hybrid models, some of which recharge themselves while driving, while others are plugged into the mains just like the 100% models.

The NVEI (New Individual Electric Vehicles) also called EPDM (Engins de Déplacement Personnel Motorisé)

These two new acronyms refer to these new means of travel that have appeared in the urban space in recent years. These new modes of transport have emerged since 2020. They offer the public the possibility of new practices with vehicles such as electric scooters, gyropods, self-service electric bicycles, thus called NVEI (New Individual Electric Vehicles) or EPDM (Engins de Déplacement Personnel Motorisé).

These modes of transport offer great flexibility and increased accessibility for urban travel, allowing people to get to work or to run errands quickly, while reducing the environmental impact and the cost of travel. This real innovation, which appeared in France, first in Paris, allows access to these self-service vehicles, via the phenomenon of free-floating. However, they can also be purchased and become a personal asset. As for the bike, it is most often electric, but many services still offer classic bikes.

Buying an electric bike, a great way to save money

As we all know, driving around the city is no longer interesting in many ways: in terms of costs, time lost in traffic jams and the negative environmental impact. In the category of NEVs, the electric bicycle appears to be the most convincing innovation of recent years. The appearance of the VAE (electrically assisted bicycle) and the classic electric bicycle has changed the lives of thousands of French people. And for good reason, there is something for everyone:

  • the electric bike of city or VTC electric;
  • the folding electric bike ;
  • the electric cargo bike;
  • the electric mountain bike.

With so many different models, finding an electric bike that fits your needs in terms of usage is a breeze these days.

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The mobility law, action for new urban mobility

Public policies also have an important role to play in the emergence of these new modes of transport. In France, policies to develop bicycle use in cities have been strengthened in recent years. In particular, with the implementation of numerous bicycle paths and self-service bicycles, as part of the "smart city" approach. French cities have thus become examples of sustainable urban mobility, with ambitious policies to encourage travel on foot, by bicycle or via the public transport network of each city. The mobility law has also taken into account the challenges of mobility in the context of urban planning, and among the many measures, we can note the following:

  • A conversion bonus to acquire a clean vehicle: up to 5,000 € for the purchase of a new or used electric or rechargeable hybrid vehicle;
  • The multiplication of recharging points for electric vehicles: mandatory installation for any place with more than 10 parking spaces;
  • the sustainable mobility package: an action offering up to 400 € per year if you go to work by carpooling;
  • the renovation of each public transport network.

The development of new forms of mobility: a challenge on many levels

These new modes of transportation have an impact on the economy and employment. Companies offering sustainable mobility solutions have seen their sales increase in recent years, creating new jobs in the urban mobility sector. The emergence of these new modes of transport also raises social issues, such as user safety and accessibility for all. Cities must therefore put in place solutions to ensure the safety of users of these new modes of transport. At the same time, they must ensure that these solutions are accessible to all citizens, regardless of their level of income or mobility.

In sum, the emergence of new modes of transport offers alternative and sustainable solutions to the challenges of urban mobility. Public policy, businesses and users have a role to play in encouraging the adoption of these new modes of transportation, while ensuring safety and accessibility for all.

In conclusion, innovation in our transport modes has led to the emergence of new services (free-floating, NVEI stores) that allow users to change their mobility practices in cities. Improving the accessibility to transportation, the speed of travel as well as a step towards a clean environmental impact that can be sustainable, moving thanks to these new NVEI allows to do good to the planet, but also a nice economy. We might as well take advantage of it.

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