New York City secures $5.6M grant to Launch Urban Freight Lab

New York City Department of Transportation (NYC DOT) Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez announced that the city received a $5.6 million federal grant from the United States Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program. This funding will create an Urban Freight Mobility Collaborative (UFC), an innovation hub designed to revolutionize urban freight movement and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions — the first of its kind in the United States.

The NYC DOT UFC will establish public-private partnerships and engage with community, industry, and academic partners to significantly decarbonize the freight sector. The UFC’s mission is to mitigate the negative impacts of freight movement, targeting a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2032.

“New York City is prepared to transform our freight sector to meet the 21st century and our changing climate while getting back to our roots – with a working waterfront across the city,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi. “I want to thank our partners at the White House and USDOT for continuing to invest in NYC’s greener freight systems. With more than 90 percent of NYC’s freight moved by truck, this Urban Freight Collaborative is critical to foster public-private partnerships to shift freight distribution to more sustainable methods, delivering our blue highway, cargo bike deliveries, electric trucking, and future innovation.”

The UFC will develop buildable short-term project designs in five priority areas, focusing on environmental justice neighborhoods and Industrial Business Zones (IBZs). Emerging technologies and strategies, such as micro-distribution centers (microhubs), common-carrier lockers, commercial cargo bicycles, micro-mobility solutions, medium and heavy-duty electric freight vehicles, and new waterborne freight infrastructure, are some of the pilot projects that will be researched and improved under the UFC.

The initiative will emphasize interagency and private data collection, develop a comprehensive freight modeling tool, and leverage robust community engagement strategies to ensure inclusive participation. The foundation laid by the UFC is poised to significantly enhance the city’s sustainable delivery and logistics efforts, setting a new standard for urban freight management.

The Urban Freight Lab will build on the city’s efforts to reimagine its freight delivery network, restructure freight distribution, and create a sustainable last-mile delivery system for getting goods where they need to go safely and efficiently. In March, the agency authorized using e-cargo bikes on city streets to make deliveries safer and more sustainable. The agency also works to install delivery ‘microhubs,’ where trucks can safely offload to smaller, greener delivery modes like cargo bikes, handcarts, and electric vans. Additionally, through the Blue Highways program in coordination with EDC and regional partners, the city is working to reactivate marine infrastructure helping to shift deliveries from larger trucks to our waterways.

Source: NYC

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