Nexus is launching an engagement process with new mobility providers aimed at extending the reach of public and sustainable transport in North East England.
It has announced a market engagement exercise that will take in companies and experts involved with flexible on-demand transport, aggregator applications, low and zero emission vehicles, and autonomous vehicles, as well as broader transport innovations.
Nexus, which provides and promotes public transport on behalf of local authorities in Tyne and Wear, believes that collaboration with emerging technology and service providers will offer the greatest benefit for new private sector partners and the communities it serves.
Head of Bus Services at Nexus, Mike Scott, said: “Our intention is to be a test bed for partnerships and projects that deliver new mobility services, complementing and adding value to existing public transport networks.
“We believe that Tyne and Wear is big enough to provide a meaningful and scalable test bed, but not so big that the effects of investment in transport innovation are hard to identify and isolate.
“Providers we have spoken with so far recognise that through a collaborative approach to delivery with a local transport authority, the benefits of innovation can be maximised and the risks minimised.”
Nexus has posted an Early Market Engagement invitation at nexus.org.uk/newmobility which sets out three objectives: Extending the reach of today’s public transport and exploiting spare capacity; contributing to local environmental priorities, and meeting the social and economic needs of communities.
The Market Engagement asks providers to set out propositions which could be delivered through a partnership with Nexus, and is open until 31 July.
Nexus owns and operates the Tyne and Wear Metro, which is the backbone of local public transport for its region, as well as operating a passenger ferry and procuring bus services.
It led the way in implementing multi-modal smart ticketing outside London through the Pop card and is currently working with industry partners on the next generation of smart technology.