|Four scenarios from the Forum for the Future toolkit “Megacities on the move”. Click to enlarge.|
Two developments reflect the attention being paid to planning for and transforming urban infrastructure and transportation in the face of increasing urbanization and the projected growth of megacities.
Global infrastructure company Ferrovial and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) just signed a five-year agreement, with Ferrovial joining the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Energy Initiative (MITEI) to support a range of research projects on transforming critical urban infrastructures of the future. Separately, Forum for the Future, working in partnership with Vodafone, the FIA Foundation and EMBARQ, has produced a toolkit to help public bodies, companies and civil society organizations understand and plan for the mobility challenges of the future. It is designed to encourage action now and stimulate innovative products and services.
Ferrovial and MIT. Founded in 1952, Ferrovial is one of the world’s leading infrastructure groups, operating through its airports, toll roads, construction and services divisions. It has a presence in over 45 countries and has some of the world’s top privately-owned infrastructure assets, such as 407 Express Toll Route in Toronto, London’s Heathrow Airport, Chicago Skyway and Ausol toll road in Spain.
Under the agreement, Ferrovial will allocate five million dollars to support a portfolio of research projects at the Institute that will meet the strategic needs of the company at the same time they advance critical scientific and technical understanding to meet the world’s energy challenges.
As a member of the Initiative, Ferrovial will also support two named fellows at MIT, the Ferrovial-MIT Energy Fellows. Projects will be developed in the areas of intelligent infrastructure and cities, water treatment and energy efficiency, among others.
Ferrovial will join the Governing Board and, on a rotating basis, Executive Committee of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Energy Initiative (MITEI). In addition, Ferrovial personnel will be designated as project heads to work alongside MIT researchers in managing project execution, which will facilitate the exchange of knowledge between the two organizations.
Innovation in infrastructure development will play a vital role in the coming decades because of the major changes that we face. Therefore, it is in our interest to join forces with MIT, a world leader in innovation, to participate in and lead the transformation of cities and infrastructure.—Rafael del Pino, Chairman of Ferrovial
Transportation, water and other critical infrastructure are essential components of a sustainable and efficient energy future. As one of the world’s largest infrastructure groups, Ferrovial brings a new and unique perspective to the MIT Energy Initiative.—Professor Ernest J. Moniz, Cecil and Ida Green Professor of Physics and Engineering Systems and Director of the MIT Energy Initiative
Forum for the Future. The toolkit, “Megacities on the move”, focuses on how to achieve sustainable urban mobility, looking at all the ways in which people will access goods, services and information and make contact with each other. It goes beyond transport to consider ICT solutions, innovative urban design and much more.
The kit includes four scenarios exploring urban mobility in the year 2040—Planned-opolis, Sprawl-ville, Renew-abad; and Communi-city—taking into account resource shortages, climate change, demographic trends and other major factors which will shape our future, and drawing on interviews with more than 40 experts from around the world. Key variable include energy sources and global governance.