The environmentally friendly on-demand service of the DB subsidiary ioki, which has already established itself as a fixed mobility module in Hamburg, will be bookable in Ahrensburg for the first time in December – and as usual without a fixed timetable and stops, i.e. flexibly bookable via an app. The basis for this innovative shuttle service is a mobility analysis of the urban area, which ioki has now presented. Besides environmental aspects, commuter flows and mobility behavior were analysed.
«Our analyses provide answers to the urgent future questions in mobility. How can we make public transport even more attractive and thus advance climate protection? With mobility analyses, we can calculate in advance where on-demand services will bring the greatest benefits,» explains ioki CEO Dr. Michael Barillère-Scholz.
The data-based analysis shows: With just five vehicles, Ahrensburg can create a great deal of added value for everyday mobility. The greatest potential for the new, demand-responsive transport (DRT) offer lies in the peripheral areas of Ahrensburg such as Hagen or Wulfsdorf. However, the city area as a whole will also be better covered by the expansion of the existing local transport system. For example, 90 percent of the citizens of Ahrensburg will have a bus stop within 250 meters of their place of residence. Travel times will be shortened by 30 percent in some cases.
«The on-demand service from ioki is a useful addition to the existing public transport system and is a good solution for the inhabitants of Ahrensburg for the ‘first and last mile’ to their own front door,» explains Jule Lehmann, Climate Protection Manager of the city of Ahrensburg. «The shuttles will enable us to provide better connections to the industrial area Nord, relieve the parking situation in the inner city and save carbon dioxide if citizens use public transport more frequently.
Ahrensburg is located at the outermost border of the inner-city HVV tariff zone (A/B tariff zone), which is why many commuters from the surrounding villages come to the station by car and then take the train to Hamburg. The on-demand service can reduce this traffic volume and bridge the last mile to the train journey. For Ahrensburg, the new offer is a double benefit: The sustainable traffic concept relieves the region’s roads and offers people a flexible and environmentally friendly mobility alternative.
Passengers enter their starting point and destination into the smartphone app developed by ioki and receive the shuttle’s departure and arrival times. On the way, passengers with similar destinations can board the shuttle. The so-called «ridepooling» enables a precisely controlled utilisation of the vehicles and protects the roads and environment. If the algorithm finds a bus connection that is faster, at the same speed or a maximum of five minutes slower than the shuttle service, the passenger is recommended the former as an alternative in the app.
From December 2020, the electrically operated shuttles will start regular operations in Ahrensburg. The service, which is being launched in cooperation with Verkehrsbetriebe Hamburg-Holstein GmbH (VHH), will initially run for a limited period until the end of 2021. ioki and the VHH have been offering a DRT service as part of the public transport system in the Hamburg districts of Lurup and Osdorf since July 2018 and were awarded the German Mobility Award 2019 for this. Since autumn 2019, ioki Hamburg is also available in the industrial area of Billbrook.
Along with the city of Winsen and the district of Stormarn, Ahrensburg is a test region for the «Reallabor Hamburg», which is funded by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) in order to test ioki’s on-demand services in rural areas.