Route planning tools can be a valuable solution to cutting down vehicle emissions and reducing road users’ exposure to harmful pollutants. Fleet managers and public transit operators can utilize route planning software to calculate the most efficient routes to decrease travel time, fuel consumption, and carbon dioxide emissions.1 In addition, this can improve business operations and increase profit margins for these companies.2 Mobile route planning tools can be utilized by pedestrians and bicyclists to identify the best routes, in terms of safety, trip duration, air quality, and noise levels. Convenient route planning apps can recognize routes with less exposure to air and noise pollution and offer alternatives to highly trafficked roads. Studies suggest that vulnerable road users would be willing to take alternative routes with similar travel times in order to avoid exposure to traffic-related air pollution.3
Trip planning systems assist with trip planning (both before and during the trip) by utilizing one or more modes of transportation, considering the traveler’s preferences and restrictions, and efficiently integrating the desired outcomes for the traveler.4 These systems can safety and efficiently connect road users to community amenities and other destinations.
How it Helps
Route planning tools have the potential to decrease vehicle emissions by identifying more efficient routes that cut down unnecessary vehicle idling. Therefore, this can reduce fleet drivers and public transit operators from being exposed to considerably high pollutant levels on a day-to-day basis. Getting the right information through these tools can help travelers make the informed choices while lowering the uncertainty and stress involved with travel, thus increasing motor vehicle safety. Pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vulnerable road users can reduce their personal exposure to air and noise pollution if route planning apps include an option to identify routes with better environmental qualities, instead of just focusing on decreasing travel time. There could also be an option to prioritize green space exposure, such as through parks, which can further maximize health benefits.5 This strategy can encourage more individuals to switch to active forms of transportation instead of driving if they can access reliable route planning tools.
To implement a route planning software, developers will need specialized computerized tools, such as GPS and spatial monitoring equipment, to gather real-time traffic and air quality data. They will also have to communicate with local stakeholders to study the most fuel efficient routes within community. However, there is a shortage of effective interactions between static and real-time information and the provision of real-time information where it is needed (such as at bus stops and railway stations). Single-mode systems make up the majority of initiatives that merge static and dynamic data. As a result, a comprehensive trip planning system that can provide information and direction on all transportation elements is required.4
The route planning tool must be able to measure its impact on delivery time and route length, fuel usage, and pollution exposure to make sure that the tool is benefitting the users.1
Vulnerable road users like children and older adults would especially benefit from route planning tools since these populations are more susceptible to environmental exposures, such as air and noise pollution.
1) Safe Routes to School and Traffic Pollution
The Safe Routes to School program is a national partnership that is focused on encouraging children to bike and walk to school. It aims to make infrastructure improvements—including sidewalks, crosswalks, and traffic calming measures—near schools to improve children’s safety. Additionally, it seeks to reduce children’s exposure to traffic pollution through identifying lower-polluted routes that children can take to get to school.
TripPlanning.Biz is a cutting-edge, all-inclusive self-serve solution that streamlines internal workflow, standardizes, and automates the trip planning process. Due to a lack of these self-serve technologies, flight departments have historically been compelled to outsource the planning of overseas trips or handle these intricate arrangements using paper folders, spreadsheets, and emails. This company has collaborated with top-tier departments to develop a solution that empowers teams to effectively manage the trip planning process internally and do away with tedious, repetitive operations prone to human mistakes.