To make HIT the main and integrated Research Pole in the fields of Transport, Sustainable Mobility and Tourism in Greece and among the top 10 relevant nodes of technology and expertise in Europe.

Acronym: DISCO
Project Title:
Data-driven, Integrated, Syncromodal, Collaborative and Optimised urban freight meta-model for a new generation of urban logistics and planning with data sharing at European Living Labs
42 months (01/05/2023 – 31/10/2026)

Description & Objectives:

Climate change represents the most significant global challenge today. The recent COP26 Agreement held in Glasgow in 2021 placed urgent emphasis on addressing such challenges. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 40 million individuals residing in the 115 largest cities in the EU are exposed to air that surpasses the WHO's air quality guidelines. Congestion costs the European economy around €100 billion annually, accounting for 1% of its GDP. Air pollution is considered a silent killer, negatively impacting people's health. The Urban Mobility Framework confirms that greenhouse gas emissions resulting from transportation need to be significantly reduced by 2030, while also calling for SULPs to be harmonized with SUMPs. The EU Green Deal outlines a blueprint for achievable transformational change, and the EU Mission4 aims to reduce climate emissions by 55% by 2030, with cities becoming climate-neutral by 2050. Achieving these goals cannot be attained solely through vehicle decarbonization targets. As part of this new transformation, some areas have become outdated, as their space, services, and accessibility no longer meet current needs.

DISCO aims to accelerate the process of scaling up to a new era of urban logistics and intelligent planning. This includes facilitating the shift towards carbon-neutral and digital cities, developing new and innovative frameworks and tools, and transforming the Urban Logistics and Planning paradigm through a Physical Internet (PI)-led approach. The outcome of this approach will be a dynamic and optimal reallocation of space, integrating urban freight into a network-of-networks that operates efficiently with the Physical Internet (PI) at its core. This will involve utilizing underutilized lands and assets and incorporating both fixed and mobile infrastructure based on throughput requirements.

DISCO plans to implement its innovative solutions to unlock hidden assets and maximize their use by strategically locating urban and peri-urban lands and optimizing logistics patterns and freight flows. To achieve this, DISCO will leverage the advancements in digital technology over the past three decades and recent developments in the "uberisation" and democratization of transport and logistics services. DISCO will explore the widespread adoption of devices and new technologies to intelligently connect supply and demand in urban logistics, making its solutions accessible to everyone.

DISCO's goal is to interconnect various logistics networks without requiring operators to change their operational methods. Instead, DISCO will request that they comply with interconnection standards and implement a physical equivalent of the digital internet. To achieve this objective, DISCO has developed four "Game Changers.":

  1. Empowering end-to-end visibility across the supply chain,
  2. Co-creating an innovative enabling city “cloud” ecosystem for trust and data protection,
  3. Driving cities in effectively delivering new urban logistics sustainable planning,
  4. Fast-tracking adoption and replication of innovative business models, based on participatory, data-driven and sharing principles involving 4+4 Demonstrators (4 Starring Living Labs and 4 Twinning Living Labs) and 4 Early Adopters.

HIT key role and responsibilities: 

CERTH is leading the Thessaloniki Starring Living Lab in Greece. The main objective of this Living Lab is the development of a new business model which integrates urban freight transportation data with cooperative city logistics schemes and space/land data, to optimize the TIF HELEXPO Exhibition Centre’s underutilized space as a flexible logistics hub. The solution implemented aims to achieve the city’s main sustainability targets for a CO2-neutral and zero-emission city by 2030 thanks to the reduced number of delivery vehicles circulating in public spaces, thus reducing traffic congestion and ensuring a better quality of life.

Along with the above task, CERTH will be leading WP2 “The DISCO urban logistics and planning PI-led Digital Transition”. Its main contributions along this work will be:

  1. to provide a robust diagnosis of the urban and peri-urban urban logistics ecosystem and baseline specification of the living labs ecosystem,
  2. to investigate the market needs and the motivations for urban logistics transition through advanced research,
  3. to conduct measure refinement and fine-tuning based on the generalized DISCO-X requirements,
  4. to build an urban logistics typology based on previous work and set up the basis for defining the pillars of the Meta Model Suite & UL transition action areas
  5. to provide a digital guide for technical, operational, and policy transition requirements fulfilment (Adaptive Blueprint).

Working towards these objectives the new generation of the Sustainable Urban Logistics Plans (SULP) topic guide will be developed to better integrate transition guidance in the SUMP/SULP cycle. The updated SULPs will include additional topics to assist cities in interconnecting their urban logistics systems.

Contact person:
Dr. Georgia Ayfantopoulou
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+30 2310498457

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