Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) has unveiled a new mini-transport hub which is designed to bring together eco-friendly travel options such as e-scooters, pedal bikes and electric vehicle charging points to neighbourhoods, and local centres.
The hub is made up of a collection of modular components which can be assembled to reinvent how we use parking bays and small public spaces to offer both better connections and shared facilities for the community.
This could include; shared transport such as e-scooters, cargo bicycles, West Midlands Cycle Hire, bike loans, electric car club vehicles and charging points or active travel support including wayfinding maps, bike hangars, tool stations and digital public transport information and timetables, public space and community facilities, such as a shelter, seating, micro-parks, and parcel lockers. There could also be space for pop-up retail, food, public services and grassroots initiatives.
Such hubs are currently being rolled out across Europe and TfWM, is now trialling its own innovative hub concept as part of the £22million Future Transport Zone programme, reports the Solihull Observer.
TfWM, worked with Warwick-based design and engineering consultancy CALLUM to develop the concept and manufacture the prototype in collaboration with partners including e-scooter hire company Voi, West Midlands Cycle Hire and electric mobility specialist LOCKEM.
Visitors to the Micromobility UK conference at the University of Warwick were able to view the prototype mobility hub on display.
This autumn, the prototype will be used for a series of on-street trials in locations across the region.
West Midlands Mayor Andy Street said: “We want people to have sustainable and affordable alternatives to the car. That’s why we’ve rolled out our cycle hire scheme and introduced e-scooter trials across the region, and now why we are looking to pilot mobility hubs. These hubs will be a way of bringing transport modes like bikes and e-scooters to our smaller local centres and neighbourhoods, giving people even more opportunities to try sustainable transport for their journeys.”