Handbook on Transport and Development
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Handbook on Transport and Development

Edited by Robin Hickman, Moshe Givoni, David Bonilla and David Banister

This Handbook provides an extensive overview of the relationships between transport and development. With 45 chapters from leading international authors, the book is organised in three main parts: urban structure and travel; transport and spatial impacts; and wider dimensions in transport and development. The chapters each present commentary on key issues within these themes, presenting the debate on the impacts of urban structure on travel, the impacts of transport investment on development, and social and cultural change on travel. A multitude of angles are considered – leaving the reader with a comprehensive and critical understanding of the field.
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Chapter 18: Urban freight: freight strategy, transport movements and the urban spatial economy

David A. Hensher and Zheng Li


The urban economy is heavily dependent on freight distribution supply chains to ensure that goods and services are available at a time and place where their consumption value is optimised. Sources of inefficiency throughout the distribution chain become sources of lost productivity (Danielis et al., 2010). Transport costs incurred in urban freight distribution are the biggest contributor to the overall logistics costs of many organisations involved in the supply of goods and services into urban locations. Trends in the logistics and business environment that increase the urban freight transport delivery problem include tighter time windows, more shipments, in smaller lot sizes, increasing traffic volumes, increasing congestion and limits on the class of vehicle allowed on specific classes of road (D’Este, 2001). Some trends in the industry are evolving to cope with growing levels of congestion and risks to productivity growth, such as greater consolidation of freight distribution, pressures to ensure distribution can occur around the clock instead of being restricted by specific constraints at a point in the supply chain (e.g., the opening hours of delivery points) and the inevitable role that new access pricing regimes will play that are focused on the concept of user pays. In this chapter we draw on empirical evidence, as appropriate, to illustrate a number of these themes in the context of urban freight movement.

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