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Sustainable Transportation Systems in Urban Areas: Planning, Operation, and Management

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Transportation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2023) | Viewed by 23999

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Naples, Italy
Interests: transportation; data analysis; transportation planning; traffic engineering; transport engineering

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, University of Naples Federico II, 80125 Naples, Italy
Interests: vulnerable road users; highway design; road safety; safety modelling; data mining techniques; econometric models

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, sustainable transport is mainstreamed across several SDGs and targets, especially those related to affordability, infrastructures, cities and human settlements, as well as improving urban air quality and health, climate actions, and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The emissions coming from the transport system are projected to grow substantially in the years to come, hence the ever-growing need of sustainable transportation systems to achieve better integration of the economy and urban–rural linkages while respecting the environment. Recognizing that transportation and mobility are central to sustainable development, this Special Issue is focused on the sustainable design, operation, and management of urban transportation.

In this Special Issue, original research articles and reviews are welcome. Research areas may include (but are not limited to) the following:

  1. Sustainable mobility to meet the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
  2. Micro-mobility: demand, planning, management, and safety;
  3. Vulnerable road users;
  4. Crash severity prediction analyses;
  5. Accessibility and walkability;
  6. Public transport and shared mobility;
  7. Methodologies for diagnosis of existing urban infrastructures;
  8. Risk-based road safety management;
  9. Machine learning applications;
  10. Automated vehicles.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Filomena Mauriello
Dr. Maria Rella Riccardi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • sustainable transportation
  • road safety management
  • vulnerable road users
  • sustainable development
  • risk-based approach

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

16 pages, 3154 KiB  
Article
Multi-Objective Planning of Commuter Carpooling under Time-Varying Road Network
by Jin Li, Hongping Zhang, Huasheng Liu and Shiyan Wang
Sustainability 2024, 16(2), 647; https://doi.org/10.3390/su16020647 - 11 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 699
Abstract
Aiming at the problem of urban traffic congestion in morning and evening rush hours, taking commuter carpool path planning as the research object, the spatial correlation of traffic flow at adjacent intersections is mined using convolutional neural networks (CNN), and the temporal features [...] Read more.
Aiming at the problem of urban traffic congestion in morning and evening rush hours, taking commuter carpool path planning as the research object, the spatial correlation of traffic flow at adjacent intersections is mined using convolutional neural networks (CNN), and the temporal features of traffic flow are mined using long short-term memory (LSTM) model. The extracted temporal and spatial features are fused to achieve short-term prediction. Considering the travel willingness of drivers and passengers, a multi-objective optimization model with minimum driver and passenger loss time and total travel time is established under the constraints of vehicle capacity, time windows and detour distances. An Improved Non-dominated Sorted Genetic Algorithm-II (INSGA-II) is proposed to solve it. The open-loop saving algorithm is used to generate an initial population with better quality, and the 2-opt local search strategy is adopted in the mutation operation to improve search efficiency. The influence of vehicle speed on the matching scheme is analyzed. The research results show that under the same demand conditions, the total travel distance of the carpool scheme is reduced by about 56.19% and total travel time is reduced by about 65.52% compared with the non-carpool scheme. Research on carpool matching under time-varying road networks will help with urban commuting efficiency and environmental quality, and play a positive role in alleviating traffic congestion and promoting carpool services. Full article
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16 pages, 734 KiB  
Article
Exploring Willingness to Pay across Different Passenger Traits
by Peter Džupka, Radovan Dráb, Marek Gróf and Tomáš Štofa
Sustainability 2024, 16(2), 548; https://doi.org/10.3390/su16020548 - 9 Jan 2024
Viewed by 749
Abstract
In recent years, the transportation landscape has seen a notable shift towards shared mobility, driven by its advantages over traditional systems fraught with inefficiencies. This shift has ushered in demand-responsive transport (DRT) systems, enabled by mobile technology. DRT offers a promising solution for [...] Read more.
In recent years, the transportation landscape has seen a notable shift towards shared mobility, driven by its advantages over traditional systems fraught with inefficiencies. This shift has ushered in demand-responsive transport (DRT) systems, enabled by mobile technology. DRT offers a promising solution for the sustainability of public transport, also for rural Slovakia; however, higher individual journey costs and the necessity for online booking create adoption barriers for this new form. This paper conducts a thorough willingness-to-pay analysis in seven rural Slovak settlements, with the goal of understanding variations and comparing the findings with the existing research. Location, household size, age, car and train usage, and previous experiences with bus transport significantly impact the willingness to pay. Consequently, tailored DRT strategies are necessary for different target groups. To maximize the efficiency of this service, integrating DRT into the regional or national public transportation network is recommended. Insights from this study hold significant implications for policymakers tasked with transforming regional transportation, particularly by integrating DRT into fixed-route bus systems. Full article
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18 pages, 2905 KiB  
Article
Walking for Sustainable Cities: Factors Affecting Users’ Willingness to Walk
by Natalia Distefano, Salvatore Leonardi and Nilda Georgina Liotta
Sustainability 2023, 15(7), 5684; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15075684 - 24 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2569
Abstract
In the context of urban sustainability, promoting pedestrian travel is fundamental. Residents’ needs are critical to creating truly pedestrian-friendly streets. The objective of this study was to answer the following questions: What aspects most increase the willingness of citizens to walk? Is the [...] Read more.
In the context of urban sustainability, promoting pedestrian travel is fundamental. Residents’ needs are critical to creating truly pedestrian-friendly streets. The objective of this study was to answer the following questions: What aspects most increase the willingness of citizens to walk? Is the extent to which these aspects are prioritized related to the context in which citizens move on a daily basis? Two linked surveys, conducted through the institutional website of the Department of Civil Engineering and Architectural of the University of Catania, allowed the inclusion of more than 1000 respondents residing in the metropolitan areas of eastern Sicily. The large database was first reduced using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and then statistically processed using Path Analysis. Thus, it was found that in the residential areas of the respondents that were not very “pedestrian friendly”, the macro factors of “safety”, “comfort”, and “quality” of pedestrian infrastructures were equally desirable for citizens to adapt to the existing pedestrian routes and thus promote walking. On the other hand, the “attractiveness” of the urban environment as a whole was a non-statistically significant variable for residents’ decision to walk. These results are not valid for every urban context, but the method used is generalizable and applicable in any urban setting. If the quality, safety, and comfort of pedestrian infrastructure results are important, urban planning should prioritize the provision of safe and accessible sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian streets. Furthermore, if the attractiveness of a neighborhood result is significant, urban design and planning should go beyond functional requirements and also focus on creating a vibrant and livable urban environment. Full article
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14 pages, 3882 KiB  
Article
Insightful Electric Vehicle Utility Grid Aggregator Methodology Based on the G2V and V2G Technologies in Egypt
by Peter Makeen, Hani A. Ghali, Saim Memon and Fang Duan
Sustainability 2023, 15(2), 1283; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15021283 - 10 Jan 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2074
Abstract
Due to the exponential expansion of the global fleet of electric vehicles (EVs) in the utility grid, the vehicle-to-grid paradigm is gaining more attention to alleviate the pressure on the grid. Therefore, an EV aggregator acts as a resilient load to enhance the [...] Read more.
Due to the exponential expansion of the global fleet of electric vehicles (EVs) in the utility grid, the vehicle-to-grid paradigm is gaining more attention to alleviate the pressure on the grid. Therefore, an EV aggregator acts as a resilient load to enhance the power deficiency in the electrical grid. This paper proposes the vital development of a central aggregator to optimize the hierarchical bi-directional technique throughout the vehicle-to-grid (V2G) and grid-to-vehicle (G2V) technologies. This study was implemented using three different types of EVs that are assumed to penetrate the utility grid throughout the day in an organized pattern. The aggregator determines the number of EVs that would participate in the electric power trade during the day and sets the charging/discharging capacity level for each EV. In addition, the proposed model minimized the battery degradation cost while maximizing the revenue of the EV owner using the V2G technology and ensuring a sufficient grid peak load demand shaving based on the genetic algorithm (GA). Three case studies were investigated based on the parking interval time where the battery degradation cost was minimized to reach approx. 82.04%. However, the revenue of the EV owner increased when the battery degradation cost was ignored. In addition, the load demand decreased by 26.5%. The implemented methodology ensured an effective grid stabilization service by shaving the load demand to identify the average required power throughout the day. The efficiency of the proposed methodology is ensured since our output findings were in good agreement with the literature survey. Full article
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15 pages, 2174 KiB  
Article
An Exploration of the Decline in E-Scooter Ridership after the Introduction of Mandatory E-Scooter Parking Corrals on Virginia Tech’s Campus in Blacksburg, VA
by Ralph Buehler, Andrea Broaddus, Elizabeth White, Ted Sweeney and Chris Evans
Sustainability 2023, 15(1), 226; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15010226 - 23 Dec 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3066
Abstract
We report shared e-scooter ridership and rider perceptions on Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg campus before and after introduction of mandatory e-scooter parking corrals in January 2022. The analysis relies on a panel of 131 e-scooter riders surveyed in Fall 2021 and Spring 2022. Although [...] Read more.
We report shared e-scooter ridership and rider perceptions on Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg campus before and after introduction of mandatory e-scooter parking corrals in January 2022. The analysis relies on a panel of 131 e-scooter riders surveyed in Fall 2021 and Spring 2022. Although parking corrals were perceived favorably prior to implementation, perceptions became more negative afterwards. Respondents said corrals were not located where needed, difficult to find, fully occupied, and took too much extra time to use. After parking corrals were introduced, ridership declined 72% overall and also fell for all socio-economic subgroups. The heaviest user groups, like undergraduate males, were most likely to quit. The first study identifying desired and actual egress times for e-scooters, we found that roughly two-thirds of riders desired egress times under 2 min and one quarter under 1 min. Prior to the introduction of parking corrals, 82% of riders reported actual egress times under 2 min, and 43% under 1 min. Those who kept riding after the introduction of e-scooter corrals reported longer actual egress times and a stronger stated desire for egress times under 2 min. Communities should be careful when imposing e-scooter parking restrictions to ensure that e-scooter egress time is sufficiently low—ideally within an easy 2 min walk of popular origins and destinations. Full article
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25 pages, 11525 KiB  
Article
Public Transport Tweets in London, Madrid and Prague in the COVID-19 Period—Temporal and Spatial Differences in Activity Topics
by Martin Zajac, Jiří Horák, Joaquín Osorio-Arjona, Pavel Kukuliač and James Haworth
Sustainability 2022, 14(24), 17055; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142417055 - 19 Dec 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1788
Abstract
Public transport requires constant feedback to improve and satisfy daily users. Twitter offers monitoring of user messages, discussion and emoticons addressed to official transport provider accounts. This information can be particularly useful in delicate situations such as management of transit operations during the [...] Read more.
Public transport requires constant feedback to improve and satisfy daily users. Twitter offers monitoring of user messages, discussion and emoticons addressed to official transport provider accounts. This information can be particularly useful in delicate situations such as management of transit operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The behaviour of Twitter users in Madrid, London and Prague is analysed with the goal of recognising similar patterns and detecting differences in traffic related topics and temporal cycles. Topics in transit tweets were identified using the bag of words approach and pre-processing in R. COVID-19 is a dominant topic for both London and Madrid but a minor one for Prague, where Twitter serves mainly to deliver messages from politicians and stakeholders. COVID-19 interferes with the meaning of other topics, such as overcrowding or staff. Additionally, specific topics were discovered, such as air quality in Victoria Station, London, or racism in Madrid. For all cities, transit-related tweeting activity declines over weekends. However, London shows much less decline than Prague or Madrid. Weekday daily rhythms show major tweeting activity during the morning in all cities but with different start times. The spatial distribution of tweets for the busiest stations shows that the best-balanced tweeting activity is found in Madrid metro stations. Full article
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13 pages, 579 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of Alternative Fuels for Coastal Ferries
by Andres Laasma, Riina Otsason, Ulla Tapaninen and Olli-Pekka Hilmola
Sustainability 2022, 14(24), 16841; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142416841 - 15 Dec 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2419
Abstract
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and European Union (EU) have set targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Focusing on ships above 5000 GT, their measures exclude several ship types, such as fishing vessels, offshore ships, and yachts. However, smaller ships generate 15–20% [...] Read more.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and European Union (EU) have set targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Focusing on ships above 5000 GT, their measures exclude several ship types, such as fishing vessels, offshore ships, and yachts. However, smaller ships generate 15–20% of the total GHG emissions. Multiple potential fuel alternatives are already in use or have been investigated to minimize carbon emissions for coastal ferries. This study evaluates the possibility of using alternative fuels for small ferries by seven different parameters: technical readiness, presence of regulations, GHG emission reduction effectiveness (with two different criteria), capital expenditure (Capex), operating expenditure (Opex), and ice navigation ability. The assessment is based on an evaluation of state-of-the-art literature as well as second-hand statistics and press releases. The study also reports the most recent implementations in each alternative technology area. As a result, it was found that although there are several measures with high potential for the future, the most feasible fuel alternatives for coastal ferries would be fully electric or diesel-electric hybrid solutions. Full article
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15 pages, 1213 KiB  
Article
Identification of Causal Relationship between Attitudinal Factors and Intention to Use Transportation Mode
by Jahun Koo and Sangho Choo
Sustainability 2022, 14(24), 16806; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142416806 - 14 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1460
Abstract
Based on the theory of planned behavior, this study identifies the causal relationship between attitudinal factors and intention to use transportation mode. A structural equation model was developed based on twelve hypotheses. The main findings and implications of this study are as follows. [...] Read more.
Based on the theory of planned behavior, this study identifies the causal relationship between attitudinal factors and intention to use transportation mode. A structural equation model was developed based on twelve hypotheses. The main findings and implications of this study are as follows. First, people who want to express themselves through cars have a high intention to use personal vehicles, and they purchase cars for this purpose. If the shared vehicle service provides a vehicle rental that reflects individual tastes, those who want to own the vehicle will use the shared vehicle. This could be a solution to the parking problem. Second, those who perceive travel as a disutility have a low intention to use public transportation. If fare discounts are applied when transferring public transportation and micro-mobility, it is expected that the use of public transportation will increase due to reduction of access time for public transportation. Third, people who like to drive have a high intention to use personal vehicles and micro-mobility. Providing space for driving cars as a leisure activity may be one of the ways to prevent traffic accidents that may occur in the future due to a mixed flow of autonomous vehicles and conventional vehicles. Full article
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19 pages, 696 KiB  
Article
Econometric and Machine Learning Methods to Identify Pedestrian Crash Patterns
by Maria Rella Riccardi, Francesco Galante, Antonella Scarano and Alfonso Montella
Sustainability 2022, 14(22), 15471; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142215471 - 21 Nov 2022
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 2359
Abstract
Walking plays an important role in overcoming many challenges nowadays, and governments and local authorities are encouraging healthy and environmentally sustainable lifestyles. Nevertheless, pedestrians are the most vulnerable road users and crashes with pedestrian involvement are a serious concern. Thus, the identification of [...] Read more.
Walking plays an important role in overcoming many challenges nowadays, and governments and local authorities are encouraging healthy and environmentally sustainable lifestyles. Nevertheless, pedestrians are the most vulnerable road users and crashes with pedestrian involvement are a serious concern. Thus, the identification of pedestrian crash patterns is crucial to identify appropriate safety countermeasures. The aims of the study are (1) to identify the road infrastructure, environmental, vehicle, and driver-related patterns that are associated with an overrepresentation of pedestrian crashes, and (2) to identify safety countermeasures to mitigate the detected pedestrian crash patterns. The analysis carried out an econometric model, namely the mixed logit model, and the association rules and the classification tree algorithm, as machine learning tools, to analyse the patterns contributing to the overrepresentation of pedestrian crashes in Italy. The dataset consists of 874,847 crashes—including 101,032 pedestrian crashes—that occurred in Italy from 2014 to 2018. The methodological approach adopted in the study was effective in uncovering relations among road infrastructure, environmental, vehicle, and driver-related patterns, and the overrepresentation of pedestrian crashes. The mixed logit provided a clue on the impact of each pattern on the pedestrian crash occurrence, whereas the association rules and the classification tree detected the associations among the patterns with insights on how the co-occurrence of more factors could be detrimental to pedestrian safety. Drivers’ behaviour and psychophysical state turned out to be crucial patterns related to pedestrian crashes’ overrepresentation. Based on the identified crash patterns, safety countermeasures have been proposed. Full article
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Review

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22 pages, 1997 KiB  
Review
Are We Taking Off? A Critical Review of Urban Aerial Cable Cars as an Integrated Part of Sustainable Transport
by Morten Flesser and Bernhard Friedrich
Sustainability 2022, 14(20), 13560; https://doi.org/10.3390/su142013560 - 20 Oct 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 4495
Abstract
The overall growth of the world’s population and urbanization lead to rethinking transport planning, further developing the conventional transport systems, and complementing new ones usefully, especially in urban environments. One way to cope with this challenge is to leave behind the already severely [...] Read more.
The overall growth of the world’s population and urbanization lead to rethinking transport planning, further developing the conventional transport systems, and complementing new ones usefully, especially in urban environments. One way to cope with this challenge is to leave behind the already severely saturated urban land use model and move to the third dimension. This includes the use of urban aerial cable cars, which can complement conventional public transport in certain transport relations. Accordingly, this paper aims to answer how the recent, past, or planned implementations of urban aerial cable cars are assessed in the scientific literature, what open research questions need to be answered to enhance the success of transport systems, and what the chances are of cable cars becoming a standard part of transport planners’ repertoires. Following systematic literature review methods, 54 studies from different databases were identified and processed in a multi-stage procedure to provide transparent insight into the relevant literature. The results, especially concerning urban and transport integration, are discussed in detail, emphasizing that cable cars have already partially found their niche, but their role in the urban environment has not yet been sufficiently studied. In conclusion, the study’s originality fills the gap in providing a review of urban aerial cable cars from a transport planning perspective by systematically considering today’s globally available literature. Full article
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