CoMoUK – conducting research and supporting local authorities and operators in the UK to expand and enhance shared mobility services
In this interview, CoMoUK’s Deputy Chief Executive Antonia Roberts shares the role her organisation plays in the larger theme of mobility as well as CoMoUK’s recent joining of the SHARE-North partnership. More information about organisation can be found at www.como.org.uk
How did CoMoUK first get involved with SHARE-North?
CoMoUK became a partner with SHARE-North after previous links to Bremen for many years from working together on another project in the early 2000s. The UK-based NGO had also met many of the current SHARE-North partners at mobility conferences over the years and has close ties with the UK partners, WYCA and SEStran. Aligned with similar values, CoMoUK joined the SHARE-North consortium officially in December 2018 and is excited to be part of a project aiming to expand and promote shared sustainable modes of transport in the North Sea Region.
How do you think the UK can benefit from shared mobility, or in your organisation’s words, co-mobility?
The widespread availability of shared services allows people to make an easier transition to sustainable mobility lifestyles. In turn, this creates greener communities, more equitable access to services, and saves individuals time and money. At CoMoUK, we have collected evidence through conducting research on integrated shared mobility over many years. More in depth research and findings can be found on our website.
Through CoMoUK’s involvement with car clubs (aka car-sharing on continental Europe), how do you want to expand or improve these programs through SHARE-North?
CoMoUK will support local authorities and operators in the UK to expand and enhance shared mobility services using the tools developed by SHARE-North partners including, the Green Deal, Shared Mobility Action Plans, and mobility hubs. CoMoUK is pleased to be a partner in the Interreg project to accelerate shared transport growth and innovation. Through their participation in the project, CoMoUK will focus on engaging interested parties to take pledges to improve shared transportation. Additionally, CoMoUK plans to implement the concept of mobihubs in targeted areas to increase mobility for all.
What’s been the reaction to shared mobility in the UK?
Over the last 20 years, we have been developing shared mobility in the UK through various bike-sharing and car clubs and have had a great response from partners who have supported our initiatives to overcome barriers in mobility and also support the organisation’s role in various pilot programmes and projects. We still have plenty of work to do, but are pleased with the reaction so far.
What do you think your organisation can share with other partners in the consortium?
One key area is our research into the impacts of car clubs and bike-sharing that can be very valuable for the project partners and serve as inspiration for joint research. Another area is that we also have many guiding documents and accreditation frameworks which others can adopt.
Any new projects or news you’d like to share?
CoMoUK held its annual Collaborative Mobility Conference at the Library of Birmingham on 12-13th November 2019 commemorating the organisation’s 20th anniversary of bringing bike- and car-sharing to the UK! Many of the SHARE-North partners contributed to that conference. More information and the presentations can be found on our website at www.como.org.uk/events.
Interview conducted by Brianna Mawra.