HYDERABAD: WRI India Ross Center for Sustainable cities and Toyota Mobility Foundation (TMF) in collaboration with Government of Telangana and Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited (HMRL), supported by LTMRHL, IIIT, TiE & CII jointly launched the Station Access and Mobility Program (STAMP) Challenge, a competition to seek possible innovative solutions to improve first- and last-mile connectivity to metro transit in Hyderabad, India. The open innovation challenge will bring together ideas from technology and service providers, mobility entrepreneurs, NGOs, corporations and citizens to co-create solutions for bridging the last mile gap. The STAMP Challenge will offer the top three business solutions, $50,000 financial assistance along with mentorship and support to collaborate to design and implement last mile solutions.
Hyderabad with a population of around 10 million people has experienced rapid urban growth and development due to its status as the IT hub. This surge has powered the economy and has resulted in a sudden increase in private vehicles use in the city causing severe congestion, limiting the access to an efficient mobility system. To overcome this, the city has invested in public transport metro system within the city and currently aims to enhance its ridership.
Appreciating the STAMP initiative, HMRL MD, MR NVS Reddy said, “Metro will be the backbone of the city and multi modal integration is the key to move towards easy and convenient commute.”
Highlighting the need and importance of last mile connectivity services to mass transit hub in Indian cities, Dr OP Agarwal, CEO, WRI India observed “Access to mass transit systems has often been a major issue in many Indian cities. Metro system can be more effective if an efficient first and last mile connectivity is established providing access to a larger population. If there is safe, efficient and seamless connectivity to and from the Metro stations, it will not only be used, but will also boost the ridership of these high capacity systems.”
Toyota Mobility Foundation and WRI India have worked together over the last two years to assist Bengaluru and other cities in India in improving access and last mile connectivity to mass transit systems.
Chief Operating Officer Shin Aoyama of Toyota Mobility Foundation stated, “TMF and WRI want to improve accessibility to metro transit and increase its usage through the tried and tested process of data based research, multi-stakeholder partnership and capacity building, open challenge and collaboration, and best solution demonstration. This approach of integrating private and public mobility can provide greater freedom of movement, and thereby further unleash the potential of the wonderful people of Hyderabad.”
This year, WRI India and TMF will work towards improving accessibility and usage of metro transit in Hyderabad through a process of research, capacity building, open collaboration, and testing. This will help provide the residents with greater ease of movement throughout the city. Through STAMP, WRI and TMF will collaborate with various stakeholders in Hyderabad including the state government, public agencies, and Hyderabad’s IT industry.
Acknowledging complete support to the project, Shekar Viswanathan, Vice Chairman & Whole-time Director of Toyota Kirloskar Motor, said “As one of the fastest growing economies of the world, India is witnessing rapid migration driven by urbanization coupled with growing infra network. Though a sign of progress, this also brings with it woes of last-mile connectivity.”
“We welcome TMF and WRI’s efforts to enhance the accessibility of Metro transit in line with our National and State Government intention. Through collaborative effort, we hope to strategize first and last mile transport modes to the Metro through viable and economic solutions thereby building a smart and well-structured city. STAMP implementation in Bangalore provided a united platform to initiate dialogue and discussion, which led to finding more people-centric solutions for easy and innovative last mile mobility. We have seen good proposals and continued work on those viable and big ideas to transform Namma Bengaluru. Today marks the expansion of this successful mobility program to the city of Hyderabad towards adopting integrated solutions for enhanced accessibility of metro transit. This supplements our approach on traffic safety and social contribution in our aim to be the best company in each town we operate in”, he added.
Pawan Mulukutla, Urban Transport Expert, WRI India, added, “Last mile connectivity services should provide safe access, offer good quality of services to the users and minimize environmental impact using technology as a key driver to achieve this.