The international confederation representing public transport providers has created a new membership category for digital platforms such as Citymapper and Uber in recognition of the role the “digital revolution” can play in complementing public transport.
The International Association of Public Transport (UITP) said it is welcoming newcomers such as Door2Door, Citymapper, Uber, Moovel, Via, Grab, Ola, Yandex, 99 and Upstream, reflecting what it calls the rapidly changing urban mobility sector.
It has created a new subsection in its membership called “Digital Platforms”, which will include players offering access to services or assets such as trip planning tools or ride sharing via the internet.
It said these digital players will work with existing UITP members on topics such as digitalisation, sustainable development or combined mobility.
While stressing that “public transport, particularly in densely utilised urban areas and during peak hours, is the only viable solution for cities”, UITP said providing efficient public transport when demand is low has proven challenging and that “this exactly is where new mobility options can step in”.
UITP secretary general Alain Flausch said, “The advent of the smartphone launched an unprecedented emergence of new players, whose influence is extending to all facets of the public transport market and digitalisation is promising to propel the industry further.
“Alone these new players do not have the capacity or capability to meet every journey need or solve congestion issues. They therefore need to operate to complement existing high quality public transport.”
UITP’s members include Transport for London, which announced earlier this year that it would not be renewing Uber’s licence to operate in the capital.
It said its new membership subsection category will include online digital platforms that facilitates access to services or assets via a business to business, business to customer or peer to peer connection.