Organisations, city authorities and even governments are increasingly investing in happier, healthier, calmer and more creative workers. We’ll be seeing public-transport bodies, car companies and high-tech firms design a new wave of commuting services that support creative productivity.
What does this productivity-centered future look like? It’s a coordinated network-blur of public and private modes of transport, including autonomous cars, ride sharing, microbuses and bike schemes. It’s also more dynamic, multi-modal and on-demand; the helplessness of today’s commute should, hopefully, give way to an experience that offers more choice and control to the commuter.
Its not science fiction and a lot of the technology already exists. Will it be like this scenario below?;
Leaving the house in the outer suburbs, a commuter will step into an autonomous six-seat mini-bus. The bus will be scheduled to arrive every weekday at the same time. If a commuter’s schedule changes, another smart-bus will change its route to pick them up. The commuter can also use an app to choose from a variety of other transport types, including small autonomous cars. The app shows the cost of each type of journey.
Stepping into the mini-bus, the commuter will join five commuters, who pay a smaller fee by sharing the ride. The bus has no driver, using a combination of radar, GPS and other sensors to navigate. Along the route, the bus constantly communicates with roadside signs, traffic lights and sensors using technology, learning the location of traffic accidents while being given priority ahead of private cars by traffic lights at intersections. That data will allow it to calculate the optimum route to the nearby train station.
Arriving at the station, the bus will pull up in a drop-off lane, not unlike the departure drop-off at an airport. The commuter will step out and the vehicle will move off to another timed-booking. When it is no longer required, the vehicle will then find a quiet back street to park, away from congested areas, or even more likely will optimise a route to its next pickup, realising the ideal of maximum vehicle utilisation.
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