Freight Futures Initiative

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Freight Futures Initiative


METRANS Freight Futures Initiative

Informing policy, collaborating with industry, preparing the workforce




METRANS has launched the Freight Futures Initiative (FFI) to foster collaborative research and workforce development. The new initiative is aimed at achieving an efficient, competitive, and sustainable freight system in California. This initiative comes as California's freight system faces many challenges: national and international competition in international trade; congestion and reliability problems at ports, airports, border crossings, and on the highway system; growing costs of compliance with state and local GHG and pollution reduction targets; lack of data on freight movements, particularly at the sub-regional level; and attracting and training the next generation workforce. The Freight Futures Initiative will convene universities, government, and industry partners to contribute to a better understanding of California’s challenges and seek collaborative solutions for addressing them.




WHAT Collaborative research and workforce development to achieve an efficient, competitive, and sustainable freight sector in California.
WHY Ambitious sustainability goals and targets, competitive challenges. How can we achieve the goals in the best way possible?


How METRANS contributes


  • Advanced technology and methods
  • Sustainable freight
  • Demos and evaluations
  • Freight data archive
  • Tools for using data
  • Attracting next gen
  • State of the art education
  • New skills for changing professions


How can you contribute?

Give us your FFI research and workforce development ideas

Submit your ideas for  research projects or workforce development projects  HERE.


Serve as advisor on our projects

We seek your participation as advisor on our research and workforce development projects.  To find out more about serving as an advisor, please contact us at [email protected]


Provide match funding

Match funding leverages our resources and allows us to do more collaborative projects.  To find out more about match funding, please contact us at [email protected]


Tell us what you think of FFI

Your suggestions will help us serve you better. Submit your comments on the  Freight Futures Initiative, HERE.


Freight Futures research examples


Research for the future

System optimization and its promise for freight efficiency

Optimizing social welfare for integrating alternative fuel vehicles


Building data resources

Estimating freight flows from diverse and sparse data

Exploring new sources of truck data


Informing policy:

Market for zero emission heavy duty trucks

Evaluating new freight modes


Collaborative research

Electrification of cargo handling equipment