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Last mile by bike

Featured in the Future Transport London Newsletter September 2022

Electrically assisted cargo bikes have been available in Hackney for a few months, as mentioned in newsletter 44 in January. They are available for hire by businesses which deliver locally. The concept is now being extended. Technology company Port has established a ‘dark hub’ in a Leicester Square car park where individuals or delivery firms can hire electric cargo bikes and other small delivery vehicles. Vehicles are returned to the base every night to be charged.

In Hackney Amazon is now one of the clients of these bikes opening its first micromobility hub in the borough. They are combining this with deliveries on foot. They have an ambition to increase their electric fleet ‘driving towards a global net-zero carbon future’, John Boumphrey, UK country manager said. The intention is to expand the use of e-cargo bikes, walkers and electric vehicle delivery fleet to other parts of the UK in coming months.

Amazon have also set up a Last Mile Logistics Hub to consolidate deliveries across central London in collaboration with the City of London, transforming 39 car parking spaces within the underutilised London Wall Car Park. Alastair Moss, chair of the Planning and Transportation Committee at the City of London Corporation, said: The Amazon Last Mile Logistics Hub alone will take up to 85 vehicles off the roads each day, meaning up to 23,000 less vehicle journeys in central London every year’.

The next step, perhaps, is delivery by autonomous robot, powered by artificial intelligence. DFD is starting robot deliveries in Milton Keynes.

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