Urban planning : the potential role of shared autonomous vehicles in transforming our cities - based on a case study of Stavanger city centre
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- Avhandlinger 
Shared Autonomous Vehicles (SAVs) presents new opportunities to solve mobility and environmental problems, and new challenges in restructuring the transport infrastructures. The integration of the vehicles could reduce traffic accidents, increase mobility and reduce congestion. The master thesis aims to unravel the new possibilities and opportunities to transform mobility and investigate urban land use. It has also focused on the potential of transforming the city with new ideas and developing technologies. The thesis has research questions: “How could SAVs be integrated to help achieve sustainable mobility?” And “ How could SAVs impact the urban land use and mobility in Stavanger City Center?” The thesis investigated the impact of SAVs on Stavanger city center with an overall goal of transforming the mobility to sustainable mobility. The thesis investigated the requirements and barriers to the integration of SAVs or Autonomous Vs. It covered the challenges in the technical requirements in vehicle development and the infrastructure, standardizing challenges in Norway and internationally, and legal barriers to integrate the vehicles. The thesis further analyses the requirements and barriers to create a strategy and intervention for the integration of the vehicles. The thesis interviewed ten very influential people related to the development of the vehicles, people related to standardizing and regulating the vehicles and people related to the implementation of the vehicles. The findings showed that everything affects everything. The technical development is developing very fast, and the ever-changing development is making standardizing and regulating the vehicles difficult. Not having regulation is also delaying the integration of the technology and the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) are keeping the technological development status secret. Moreover, integrating SAVs would require all parties to work together. Additionally, the thesis analyzed the impact of SAVs in the city center of Stavanger municipality. It investigated the impact of SAVs in land use and mobility in the city center. The thesis analyzed: • The impact in parking areas • The impact on transport infrastructures • The impact of SAVs in the attractiveness and livability of the city center. The thesis found out that in the transition time removing 40% of the total number of parking registered in Stavanger city center could potentially free an area corresponding to 7 football fields. The analysis showed that SAVs could free the city center from car jam-packed streets and congestion. The impacts all lead to freeing area in the city center which could promote new development and improve livability and attractiveness of the city center. The thesis further analyzed the potential scenarios of integrating SAVs in the city center. It analyzed the alternatives and recommended to implement SAVs as an integrated part of the public transport in a mixed mobility paradigm. The thesis also selected possible routes and mechanism to integrate SAVs. The thesis concluded that SAVs could change the Stavanger City Center. They would free area and provide space for change. The change in the city center does not solely depend on the integration of SAVs, but on how the society wants to move and live in the city center. SAVs could provide opportunities to improve the accessibility and reduces the burden on the demand for parking areas in cities.
Master of City and Regional Planning. UiS - Universitetet i Stavanger. Faculty of Science and Technology. Department of safety, economics and planning.