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Mobility is an essential ability, necessary for education, work, entertainment, and healthcare. For regions, making it accessible to all – young people, the severely excluded, people with reduced mobility, seniors – by offering truly inclusive mobility is a powerful act in citizens’ favour. It is also an investment in the future, since the areas with the best mobility are also those that do best economically, socially and culturally. Finally, it is an excellent marker of living together. Solutions exist, through joint development with the members of the public involved, who are best able to express their needs.
What if the big divide were that of access to mobility? While part of the population juggles easily with increasingly multimodal systems, those in rural France and the peripheries do not always have access to public transport. The Mobility Orientation (LOM) law, with the creation of mobility pools and multimodal information services at regional level, should help solve this problem. What is the solution? Combining modes (cycling, carpooling, traditional modes, etc.) and better informing the public about this offer.
The Assises de la Mobilité (Mobility Conference) highlighted a double exclusion: some members of the public are unaware of the transport offer; for others, it is too complex to use.
In Creil Sud Oise, the public meetings organised with the inhabitants of the 11 towns in the urban area, prior to the call for tenders intended to decide between service providers, highlighted the need for a more efficient service than demand-responsive transport, and the need to improve service to the commercial area, in particular for the 5,000 employees who work there. These expectations have been taken into account by RATP Dev, the new operator selected in September 2019 for the transport network in the urban area.
We appreciated RATP Dev’s willingness to call on a local association for the management of a fleet of 140 electric and pedal bicycles.
In the Île-de-France region, in Mantes-la-Jolie, RATP Dev has been operating the Tamy demand-responsive transport network since 2007 on behalf of Île-de-France Mobilités and Grand Paris Seine & Oise, the largest urban community in France. Tamy, which works in synergy with urban transport in the region, carries around 10,000 passengers a year. The service has just taken a new step, that of digitisation. RATP Dev has joined forces with the start-up Yuso to allow passengers to book via an app.
The benefit is twofold. For passengers, it’s the assurance of being able to book very easily, 24 hours a day. For the operator, the digitisation of the offer makes it possible to group, book and monitor journeys in real time for fellow passengers going in the same direction. This dynamic management makes it possible to increase the availability and quality of service through efficient grouping technology and better regulation of geo-located vehicles.
RATP Dev Micro-transit Director
Demand-responsive transport has a very specific role in the wide variety of transport modes. Adapted to sparsely populated regions or to times of day less well covered by the conventional network, it responds very flexibly to demand and this is even more true with digitisation. In London, RATP Dev along with Transport for London and MOIA, Volkswagen’s New Mobility subsidiary, are experimenting with an innovative and inclusive demand-responsive transport service: all the vehicles are equipped for people with reduced mobility.
Demand-responsive transport, a flexible solution, increasingly personalised.
Promoting accessibility for RATP Group means pushing the attention paid to its customers as much as possible. Indeed, facilities for people with reduced mobility often benefit a wider audience. Originally designed for people in wheelchairs, low-floor buses have become an obvious solution, which benefits both the elderly and children.
Within the RATP Accessibility Advisory Committee, the RATP Accessibility Mission is therefore working both with major associations in the world of disability and with an association that represents the elderly. To be as close as possible to users, it presents its projects to these partners and regularly tests new equipment with them. This is the case for the sound beacons currently deployed in the underground network and the arrangement of spaces for wheelchair users in new buses.
RATP Accessibility Mission Director
While it is impossible to put lifts in all stations in the historic metro network, the human relationship can be reinforced, through certification procedures (S3A and CapHandéo labels). For staff members, training means doing the right thing and using the right words to identify people who need specific help.
Staff members greatly appreciate being able to receive training in welcoming people with disabilities.