The Urban Freight System and Its Supporting Infrastructure


The Urban Freight System and Its Supporting Infrastructure


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The urban freight system is essential for the livability of any city. In the last decade, densification, the growth of e-commerce, and the changing mobility ecosystem have amplified commercial vehicles' (CV) challenges navigating the city streets or finding adequate space to park.

Much of the current research and transportation planning efforts at the urban scale have focused on passenger mobility, giving little attention to CV flows and their parking behavior. Furthermore, collecting CV data at the urban scale is challenging as this sector is fragmented, and its operations are complex, fast-changing, and heterogeneous. This results in local governments having limited insight into CV operations when developing appropriate and data-driven initiatives and policy measures.

In response to this urban challenge, this research focuses on the need for cities and researchers to collect comprehensive and high-quality data; and develop evidence-based knowledge about CV operations and their supporting infrastructure. This research combines a set of empirical case studies and analytical research including:

  1. Documenting and analyzing urban CV parking patterns,
  2. Developing and implements a comprehensive vehicle classification system focusing on the CV's heterogeneity, and
  3. Conducting an unsupervised data mining method to discover and evaluate temporal and spatial CV traffic variations.

Biographical Information

Gabriela Giron-Valderrama served as the Urban Freight Coordinator at PBOT. Before joining PBOT, Gabriela worked as a Predoctoral Research Associate at the Supply Transportation and Logistics Center, contributing and leading novel research in the urban freight field. She directly collaborated with the lab’s public and private sector partners to work on solving problems relevant to urban good delivery system in the City of Seattle. These research efforts have resulted in the development of a new body of works, several publications in peer- reviewed journals, city reports, and new city protocols for urban freight infrastructure design and management.


Transportation | Urban Studies and Planning

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The Urban Freight System and Its Supporting Infrastructure