Last Mile Logistics

29th June 2015 / Posted by CRP Team

Over 90 people, representing the European freight transport industry, private companies, the public sector and a range of research organisations, attended the final project conference for the LaMiLo Last Mile Logistics project held in Brussels earlier this week. Cross River Partnership’s role within this project has been to develop a series of policy measures to influence behaviour change in the last mile of logistics – this mile produces the most NOx, carbon, cost, congestion.

LaMiLo, an INTERREG IVB North West Europe project funded by the European Regional Development Fund, has aimed to create a step change in freight deliveries by fully considering the ‘last mile’ of a supply chain. A range of reports on behaviour change, public and private sector perspectives, and policy reviews have been produced as part of the project; alongside a series of pilots testing different approaches to urban consolidation centres across North West Europe.

Key themes from the project conference included:

  • Consolidation centres have proved to be successful in reducing the impact of freight traffic on urban roads, including reducing carbon emissions and NOx. Four of the LaMiLo pilots, including the London Borough of Camden’s multi-borough consolidation centre, will continue beyond the life of the LaMilo project. The success of these consolidation centres will rely, in part, upon the volumes they are able to attract.A key action for central London is to ensure a strategic approach is taken to the use and development of consolidation centres in the future to ensure they are sustainable beyond the start-up phase. We will seek to work with Transport for London, the central London local authorities and BIDs / businesses to stimulate, develop and implement this strategic approach.
  • Behaviour change of all stakeholders is key to the success of last mile logistics solutions, including consolidation centres. Part of the tools in changing behaviour is having the data available to demonstrate the beneficial impact of last mile logistics solutions. This requires a transparency of economic, environmental, and social costs and benefits. Another key tool is to raise awareness of the issues surrounding last mile logisticsThere is scope to raise awareness in central London within both local authorities and businesses of the issues associated with last mile logistics, as well as the types of activities that could be undertaken to address these issues and demonstrate their benefits. We would like to actively engage local authorities and businesses and stimulate behaviour change. We will explore the development of a sustainable procurement approach with partners and funders.
  • The time is here for organisations to ‘Lead the Way’ in improving their last mile logistics. LaMiLo has seen the successes that both public and private sector organisations have had when they have chosen to implement a last mile logistics solution themselves – be it adopting sustainable procurement policies, or establishing a consolidation centre.If you would like to ‘Lead the Way’ please get in touch with Charlotte Knell, on CRP will be able to help put projects together and seek funding for its partners, and point others in the right direction.

What is next? All of the formal reports and documents associated with the LaMiLo project are available on the project website Whilst last mile logistics has increased in visibility over the last few years, there is still a long way to go to reduce the impact of freight traffic in central London. As the LaMiLo project draws to an end, CRP will continue to implement actions to improve freight management in central London, and which contribute to improving air quality, reducing carbon emissions and making places that work.