Four global brands unite to accelerate evolution of transport for smart cities

Reports | Technology

The founder members of a Shared Research Programme (SRP) have been announced today: Aviva, BP, Hastings Direct and Honda R&D Europe. These major companies have confirmed their investment into a three year foundation research programme, led by TRL in a strategic partnership with DG Cities, to develop, test and validate new road transport technologies, services, and business operating models.

The group will ask the difficult questions that underpin transformational change, and consider their impact on society. In so doing they are affirming their role as enablers of future transport systems in the UK.

The members of the Shared Research Programme will leverage the £19m joint investment from UK Government and industry in the establishment of a London connected test environment for future transport and mobility solutions – the Smart Mobility Living Lab: London (SMLL) – which will have the infrastructure and facilities to undertake real world trials to help develop more intelligent, safe, sustainable and joined up transport systems.

SMLL is a set of real world test routes in and around the Royal Borough of Greenwich and the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The routes will provide the most complex urban, real-world test and validation environment in the world involving the general public.

Sharing resources, knowledge, insight, and resulting intellectual property, the founder members will select and direct research activities that give them unique insight and early access to the emergent smart mobility market.

Results from their research will allow members to play a pivotal role in the design of sustainable new transport systems. As investment in the Shared Research Programme grows with the recruitment of additional members, the proportional benefit to each member increases.

Trevor Dorling, Managing Director of DG Cities Limited, who together with TRL will manage the Shared Research Programme said: “We are delighted to announce the participation of these prestigious companies as Founding Members in this important and ambitious research programme.  Under the direction of the Founding Members, the research will provide valuable insights into the way transport is changing and its impact on business, cities and residents.”

Adrian Killham, Senior Vice President of Honda R&D Europe UK said: “Honda R&D Europe, represented by the UK R&D centre is delighted to join this important and far-sighted project as a founding research partner. London, as an expanding, dynamic mega-city, is actively seeking solutions to the challenges of mobility for its population. Honda R&D Europe looks forward to participation in the Smart Mobility Living Lab research and expects to learn how our various technologies can contribute to achieving a clean, safe & secure society“.

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