How to use scenarios to support transport planning?

A new report released by the MORE project explores how cities can make use of scenario-based planning to make better decisions.

The report, authored by Tom Cohen at University College London, stems from the assumption that many factors and actors contribute to shaping the local transport environment. When the municipality before controlled most aspects of the transport environment, this is no longer the case.

The document intends to provide practitioners with some meaningful support as they attempt to do their job in the face of an ever-changing mobility ecosystem. It addresses the issue of planning transport against a future made even more uncertain by the rise in prominence of new mobility services providers that are altering the transport offer rapidly and without necessarily first consulting the public authorities.

Starting with a definition of key concepts such as “measures and packages”, “scenarios” and “vision”, the report then addresses how cities can embrace uncertainty and make more robust strategies so that they perform well in a range of situations.

“The emphasis in MORE is upon the potential of technological advances to assist cities in managing corridors more successfully. But this is a double-edged sword: as identified in the case of ride hailing etc, technological advances can equally arise in the form of challenges to the city’s sovereignty and/or the situation they must manage. In fact, technological change may have become a greater source of uncertainty for the transport policy maker than at any time in the past”, the report reads.

“The message of MORE is that a new approach is needed. We must move on from a singular view of the future based on an attempt to deny uncertainty. We must instead embrace uncertainty and work constructively with it in order to make sounder decisions.”

The full report is accessible here.


The Horizon 2020 MORE project is developing tools and procedures for the design of urban corridor roads. The MORE tools are being tested in five European cities - Budapest, Malmö, Constanta, Lisbon and London. Through the MORE Exchange Forum, which will convene for the second time in June 2020, transport and urban planning experts can provide feedback on the tools and concepts being developed. Polis leads MORE's communication and dissemination activities. For an overview of the MORE reports published to date, visit the project website.


Credits: Alvaro Reyes, Unsplash.