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Research Projects

STATUS: Complete YEAR: 2014 TOPIC AREA: Sustainability, energy, and health CENTER: MetroFreight

The Dualism of Urban Freight Transport: City vs. Suburban Logistics

Project Summary

Project number: MF-4.1c

Funding source: Volvo Research and Educational Foundations

Performance period: 1/1/2014 to 10/31/2018


Project description

This paper identifies the implications of sub-urbanization for urban freight distribution and explores the extent to which suburban logistics deserves attention as a distinct dimension of urban freight transport research. The main trends increasing the relevance of suburban logistics are identified, making it the norm rather than the exception. It is argued that a dualism in urban freight distribution between the central areas and suburbia is emerging. This dualism involves very different functional and operational characteristics. Recent developments including regulations enforcing city logistics strategies such as tolls or off-peak hour deliveries, urban land-use designs based on smart growth principles, and the emergence of e-commerce are likely to incite a growth of this dualism. The different urban distribution channels, operations and modes depending if city or suburban logistics are involved remains to be further investigated.



Sonke Behrends
Ph.D., Technology Management and Economics, Division of Logistics and Transportation
Vera Sandbergs Allé 8 A
[email protected]

Jean-Paul Rodrigue
Professor; Van Horne Researcher in Transportation and Logistics, Global Studies and Geography; University Transportation Research Center, Region 2 (UTRC)
100 Hofstra University
Hempstead, NY 11549
United States
[email protected]