Parisians who order online at Ikea can now be delivered by inland barges The hybrid-powered ship uses the River Seine for this. Ikea says that around 30 percent of orders are good for transport by water. The floating warehouse sails up and down the Seine between the inland port of Gennevilliers, where Ikea has a distribution center, and four unloading points, from where cargo bikes depart to serve customers’ orders.
Lyreco (a wholesaler in office supplies) and a recycling company also use this last-mile service, called Fludis, The ship will be loaded with packages and pallets in Gennevilliers from 5:30 am. The ship can load up to 7 tons of goods or 3,000 parcels. While sailing, the parcels are collected in containers that are loaded on electric cargo bikes. These bikes can transport up to 250 kilograms.
According to initiator Gilles Manuelle in French media, his concept is not only sustainable but also economically viable: “At the moment, delivery vans have lost at least an hour due to traffic jams to drive in and out of Paris. These unproductive hours are avoided, ”says Manuelle, who assumes that his urban distribution concept will soon expand to other cities in France as in the rest of Europe on condition that a navigable river or canal is present”.