The services of the Mobiliteitsfabriek (Mobility Lab) are all about smart mobility. As a mobility service provider they offer a platform with which they, together with partners, meet various target groups’ mobility needs, such as locals, tourists, expats, exchange students and business travellers. The Mobiliteitsfabriek aims to make mobility easy, accessible and efficient for all people living in or visiting the Netherlands. Focus and innovation have made the Mobiliteitsfabriek an important player in 'integrated mobility' and 'Mobility as a Service'. Bart Molmans, network manager partnerships: "We want to make a major impact on (social) sustainability by fulfilling the changing travel needs of travellers on a large scale with today's modern mobility."
Bart Molmans - © Lotte Stierhout
The Mobiliteitsfabriek offers a one-stop-shop of services that are needed to pleasantly live and work in the Netherlands, but also travel like a local when you are a tourist or come from abroad. “We offer a variety of transport modalities such as car-sharing and public transport, but also healthy alternatives like (e-)bikes. In addition, we relieve the user and client with a transparent and clear (digital) process for billing and payment traffic (fintech), an easily accessible customer service centre, clear data insights and management reports. We also have a consultancy branch for design issues relating to public spaces and the mobility transition.
The Mobiliteitsfabriek has a close connection to the Healthy Urban Living proposition. “In my opinion, Healthy Urban Living is a stepping stone for many social and economic themes. It shows how we are building a liveable and healthy city and region where residents, visitors and employees feel comfortable to live, work, and discover in an environment that has a good balance between urban areas and varied nature. Research, sports, culture, science; they can all find a place in the Utrecht Region to experiment and grow. This also applies to our smart mobility solutions”. Molmans sees mobility in the region as a connecting link; people will always want to meet, discover, or travel. This can be facilitated with smart sharing solutions and a good network of public transport. “Take our pay-by-use basis, for example. This service stimulates the ‘sharing economy’. Owning a car or bicycle that is just used for one hour a day is no longer important. If you need transport at a particular time, we will ensure that the right mobility is available at the right time under the right conditions. Sustainable mobility is the connecting link. We are increasingly shifting from ‘owning’ to ‘having access to’. In other words: sustainable sharing”.
Innovation in mobility
The Mobiliteitsfabriek is working on many innovative projects. An excellent example of the pay-by-use function is the Utrecht Region Pass. This hospitality card, connected to the user's credit card, can be used to utilise all forms of sustainable mobility (including rental OV-bikes) and at the same time pay entrance fees at visitor attractions in the Utrecht Region.
Another social project is to provide elderly people or families with low incomes with a mobility budget. “Smart and sustainable mobility can offer more perspective on the quality of life. It offers people a chance to participate in society or facilitate them to go to job interviews,” Molmans explains.
A more recent request arose as a result of COVID-19. Companies were looking for new ways of mobility and subscriptions for their employees. As working from home is firmly integrated into our society nowadays, de Mobiliteitsfabriek developed new smart mobility packages that facilitate working hybrid at different locations.
The next steps
Smart mobility is here to stay. Molmans expects smart mobility to keep on developing in the future. “For example, I believe that, in the nearby future, mobility – just like your subscription to the gym or your ticket to a cultural event – will become part of your ‘digital house key’. This key can be an app on your phone which contains all your rights, subscriptions and is connected to your bank account”.
In the meantime, the Mobiliteitsfabriek is focussing on becoming even more sustainable and expanding abroad. “We already contribute to 9 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Our goal for the coming years is to develop and complement our services even further, so we can contribute to all 17 goals. Furthermore, even though we still have enough room to expand in the Netherlands, we are currently investigating expansion to the United Kingdom and Germany as well”.