ProjectITRACT: Improving Transport and Accessibility through new Communication Technologies

Application Areas
ITRACT: Improving Transport and Accessibility through new Communication Technologies

A number of areas within the North Sea Region are located at a distance from the main economic agglomerations of their countries and lag behind in terms of socio-economic development. Key elements in development are connectivity and accessibility. In line with the European Commission strategy document “A sustainable Future for Transport – towards an integrated technology-led and user- friendly system”, the ITRACT project aims to improve those capacities through innovative transport and communication concepts. Contributing also to the Digital Agenda of Europe 2020, the project will focus on the development and use of ICT applications to boost efficient, environmental- and user friendly transport concepts in order to reverse the spiral of decline in remote areas.

Physical transport together with good virtual communications are both important in reducing the social and economic exclusion of remote areas. In accordance with the Gothenburg agenda, our aim is to create sustainable and inclusive regional economies and communities throughout the North Sea Region by improving the virtual and physical modes of transport through innovative technologies. In addition, we refer in particular to the Bristol Accord, where it says that sustainable communities are “safe and inclusive, well planned, built and run, and offer equality of opportunity and good services for all” (ODPM,2005, p6). The project wants to foster the success of the sustainable communities' policies by contributing to a more effective interaction of spatial planning, transportation, economic and environmental policies, social policy, finance and governance – all strategic policy EU interventions in the 2007 – 2013 and 2014 – 2020 European Union programmes. The objectives of the Lisbon agenda will be transferred throughout the whole North Sea Region by a multi-disciplinary team of partners.

The transnational partnership brings together technology experts - in the fields of novel ICT, satellite, wireless broadband and sensor technology - with experts in social, economic, and spatial development, and transport operations. Within the triple helix of business, governmental, and knowledge institutions we will develop an information architecture and run pilot actions in order to create standardized technical procedures for efficent and user-friendly transport services. Different traditions, funding options, and regulatory systems, depending on the choice of market organization, will be taken into account. Best practice guides: 1.Information architecture and exchange mechanisms for efficient transport concepts 2.Transnational business models for ICT based transport services 3.Empowerment of the user – intelligent mobility in remote areas Major outcome is a report on policy recommendations and the implementation of innovative strategies for improved transport and accessibility in the North Sea Region and wider Europe.

Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS), as we want to develop and test them during the project, create clear benefits in terms of transport efficiency, sustainability, safety and security, whilst contributing to the EU internal market and competitiveness objectives. Referring to the European Commission’s Transport and Mobility action plan, the project ITRACT promotes the transnational deployment of ITS, also as continuous cross- border services for travel information and traffic management which can not be achieved by one member state alone. ITRACT’s transnational co-operation aims at innovation and the transition to a competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy by creating a knowledge platform on transport and ICT througout the NSR.