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Research Article

Intelligent Systems to Enhance Last Mile

Connectivity for Upcoming Smart Cities in India
Moushila De1, Shailja Sikarwar2, Vijay Kumar3

Due to exorbitant migration in urban areas in the last few decades, increasing vehicle ownerships, traffic
congestion and rising extreme air pollution have resulted more and more cities in India to opt for various
mass rapid transit systems such as metro rail, mono rail and BRT systems etc. But cities still faces the
problem of last mile connectivity. Most of the cities don’t have proper last mile connectivity facilities.
First mile/last mile connections are made in a number of ways, these include: walking, bicycling, private
automobile, metro feeder, bus service local bus, E-rickshaw, cycle rickshaw and auto rickshaw. This article
is an attempt to understand the existing last mile connectivity issues in various cities of India especially
in Delhi and how with the help of various Information and Communication based solutions, last mile
connectivity can be enhanced in upcoming smart cities in India. This article basically focuses on seamless
integration with other modes physically, technically and institutionally, smart parking management through
RFID based technology and biometric devices, electronic road pricing, use of mobile GIS technology in
safety and security process, installation of passenger information system and operation control centre
and multiuse mobility card, Green CAB “dial a rickshaw facility etc. These above intelligent system and
smart solutions can be used to enhance last mile connectivity in upcoming smart cities in India.

Keywords: Automatic ticket vending machine, Geographical information system, Electronic road
pricing, Intelligent technologies, Radio frequency identification device

Computational and Intelligent technologies provide a strong and efficient support to transportation infrastructure to
address the issues of Last Mile Connectivity. People often have problem in starting their trip i.e. from their home. A
person has beyond his residence to reach the station located at main transport network.

Providing best last mile connectivity options can reduces the cases of various crimes and also helps in the prevention
of crime. It will also ensure safety and security of people specially women. During the last few decades, total number
of cars has increased traffic congestion and related urban transport problem also arise in cities of India. Traditional
method of an aid in this case is a feeder bus that is provided beyond the transport network to meet these needs but
the problem is more than just feeder buses. Very few people prefer walking and cycling due to poor conditions of road
infrastructure etc. Therefore, it is necessary to focus and enhance last mile connectivity in various cities of India. Last
mile connectivity should not be just an option at metro ends but be treated as an opportunities as a user’s home. It is
also necessary to suggest various intelligent technologies solutions.

Student, MURP (Urban and Rural Planning) India.


Associate Professor, 3Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, D. C. R. University of Science and Technology, Murthal,

Haryana, India.

Correspondence: Moushila De, MURP (Urban and Rural Planning) India.

E-mail Id:

How to cite this article: De M, Sikarwar S, Kuma V. Intelligent Systems to Enhance Last Mile Connectivity for Upcoming Smart Cities
in India. J Adv Res Const Urban Arch 2017; 2(3&4): 16-31.

ISSN: 2456-9925

© ADR Journals 2017. All Rights Reserved.

J. Adv. Res. Const. Urban Arch. 2017; 2(3&4) De M et al.

The Research including the rise in private vehicles have led to chaos and
disruption around metro station. It is the reason behind
The effort aims to understand the first and last mile congestion on access road to metro station.
connectivity and its relationship with a commuter’s choice
of transit options for conceiving a journey and its impact To understand the existing last mile connectivity, four
on public transport ridership and also evolve intelligent stations (Saket, INA, Vishwavidyalaya, Sultanpur) of Delhi
technologies and smart technologies based solutions to metro stations were choosen based on ridership data
ensure or to enhance various last mile connectivity options up to January 2017, last mile connectivity modes quality
in the upcoming smart cities in India. assessment through Reconnaissance survey, abutting land
use around yellow line metro stations, trip generating and
Existing status of Last Mile Connectivity in India trip attracting metro stations through reconnaissance
survey, activity intensity around the stations, typology of
In most of the Indian cities the conditions of last mile the stations.
conditions is very pathetic. In most of the cities people are
facing the problem of uncomfortable environment, long Figure 1 explains the abutting land use plan of selected case
waiting hours, long walking distance, overcrowded, traffic study stations. Based on the land use pattern of the area,
congestions etc. A survey was conducted to understand the Saket, Sultanpur, INA and Vishwavidyalaya metro station
last mile connectivity scenario in Delhi. From the survey, are categorized into trip producing area or trip attracting
it was found that presently only 41 out of 138 stations area, also categorized into high, mid and low ridership. It
of Delhi MRTS are served by feeder services. Haphazard also explains the factors affecting the impact of last mile
supply of alternate modes around mass transit stations connectivity on metro ridership.

Figure 1.(a) Abutting land use plan of Vishwavidyalaya; (b) Saket; (c) Sultanpur; (d) INA metro stations

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Table 1.Metro station area profile

Attributes Saket Metro Sultanpur INA Metro Vishwavidyalaya
Station Metro Station Station Metro Station
Planning zones Zone F Zone J Zone D Zone O
Public transport Modes Metro feeder bus, Bus, Share Auto, Bus, Auto Rickshaw, Share
modes Auto, DTC Buses, E - Rickshaw Auto, Auto, Bus,
Grameenseva, College Bus, E -
Metro bicycle Rickshaw
sharing scheme.
Physical Parking Yes Yes No Yes
Pick up and Yes No Yes No
drop off
Safety Eyes on Street Fair Poor Fair Fair
Activity Fair Poor Fair Good during
college hours
Dead Spots No No No No
Information Fair Poor Fair Fair
Conduciveness High Wall - - - -
of Street
Shade No No No No
Access Yes No Yes Yes
Street light Approx. 20 m Approx. more Approx.15 m Approx. 15 m
gaps than 30 m
Environment Trees Fair Poor Poor Good
Noise Average Poor Average Good
Foul Smell No No No No
Ambience Poor Poor Fair Fair

On ground observation also highlighted the fact that all the Inadequate, but Vishwavidyalaya and INA metro stations
case study stations are located along busy arterial roads has relative better last mile connectivity than Sultanpur
and ring roads causing disruption to the through fare of and Saket métro stations.
vehicles. In terms of physical infrastructure, the stations are

Source: Retrieved from DMRC on February 2017

Figure 2.Comparative analysis of ridership data
It is depicted from the Fig. 2 that Saket has the highest are only because of availability of abutting land use in
ridership and footfalls, followed by Vishwavidyalaya and selected case study stations. For IPT operators and NMT
INA has the same and mid ridership whereas Sultanpur operators, analysis was focused on current scenario of
has the lowest ridership and footfalls. These differences LMC options available and their ownership. Looks like

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average expenditure on parking, permits, operation and operated, total time taken, total distance covered, route
maintenance of the vehicle were included to get insights or area covered, total number of bicycle taken by passenger
of the functioning of the various LMC options available to in a day, rules and regulations applied for people who
the commuter. took cycle for rent etc. Feeder bus and bicycle plays an
important role for enhancing last mile connectivity in that
For Feeder bus operator and bicycle sharing operator, particular area.
analysis was focused on total number of feeder bus

Figure 3.IPT and NMT survey analysis

For private vehicle users, the analysis included various styles LMC options available. An open ended question targeted at
of travel and user characteristic. But the main objective the willingness of user to opt for public transport if proper
here was to obtain an estimation of the perception of user LMC options and parking mechanisms are in place near
for not using public conveyance and its connection with the major PT systems was also admitted.

Figure 4.Survey locations

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Figure 5.Types of vehicles surveyed

Figure 6.Trip purpose

Figure 7.Frequency of tips

Table 2.Total distance (kms.) covered by private mode users

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Table 3.Average time to last mile

Table 4.Average cost paid by private vehicle user for last mile connectivity

Reasons for not using Public transport by Private Vehicle Users

Figure 8.Private vehicle users survey analysis

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The study incorporates, for commuter category, the aspects trips. The analysis also included several types of LMC
of time, cost, and comfort for the overall journey with main modes available, perceived problems, suggestions and user
focus on last mile connectivity options involving, “Origin characteristic during peak and non-peak hours.
to public transport” and, “Public transport to Destination”

Figure 9.Trip distribution by age

Figure 10.Trip distribution by gender

Figure 11.Trip distribution by education

Figure 12.Trip distribution by occupation

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Figure 13.Trip distribution by income

Figure 14.Trip distribution by purpose

Figure 15.Trip distribution by frequency

Figure 16.Trip distribution by distance (in km) between the selected 4 metro stations and the origin/
destination of the commuters

Figure 17.Modal split during peak hours

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Figure 18.Modal split during off-peak hours

Table 5.Average trip length

Table 6.Average time (in minutes) of first/last mile

Figure 19.Time spend to cover the first/last mile

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Figure 20.Time spend in different section of the journey

Figure 21.Cost (in Rs.) of first/last mile at selected four metro stations

Figure 22.Cost incurred in different sections of journey

Most of the commuters cited problems relating to over- prices of last mile connectivity often times more than
crowding during peak hours, low frequency of metro half of the total journey expenditure and poor pedestrian
services and too long walking distances for addressing infrastructure further adds up to the complications for the
the last mile connectivity options of their journey. High commuters.

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Table 2.Suggestions for the improvement of last mile connectivity near the selected four case study
stations by metro commuters
Saket INA Vishwavidyalaya Sultanpur
1). Improvement of IGNOU 1). Footpaths need to be 1). Service lane is 1). Service lane is
road is needed. developed. needed. required.
2). Road side parking should be 2). New feeder bus services 2). Foot over 2).Feeder bus service is
removed in IGNOU road. needs to be started bridge or subway required.
3). Improvement and connecting INA metro needed near 3). Roads conditions are
strengthening of road from station to Sarojini Nagar and Vishwavidyalaya very bad, it needs to be
SangamVihar to Saket (Near R.K. Puram Colony. metro stations strengthening.
SBI) through Sainik Farms 3). Emphasis should be connecting both 4). Roads from
is needed to avoid traffic given on pedestrilisation sides of the stations. Gurudwara to Sultanpur
congestion. safety. 3). There is scope metro station needs to
4). Pedestrilisation needs to be 4). Parking is needed near for improvement be strengthened.
developed near Saket metro INA metro station, so that in terms of more 5). Drainage problem
station. Focus should be on roadside parking can be and better quality need to be solved.
people who are on foot. removed. provisions for 6). Road maintenance is
5). NMT needs to be enhanced 5). Activities like shops, and “bicycle on rent” as needed.
especially in the peak hours. pedestrilisation friendly the present supply 7). Activity need to be
6). The road from Neb Sarai environment needs to be runs short of the developed around metro
to Western Marg connecting developed for everyone huge demand. stations.
Saket metro needs to be safety. 4). Feeder bus 8). Focus should be
strengthened. 6). Inner roads of Lakshmi services or shuttle given on pedestrilisation
7). 100 ft road connecting Bai Nagar and Sarojini Nagar option or DTC buses specially the road
IGNOU road to Chattarpur needs to be strengthened, need to be started connecting senior
needs to be strengthened. so that maximum people connecting from secondary school to
8). Flyover from Tughlakabad can use inner roads for Vishwavidyalaya Sultanpur metro stations.
to Khanpur is needed to avoid cycling, biking and walking metro station to 9). Last mile connectivity
traffic congestion. directly to the metro Kamala Nagar. modes should range
9). Feeder bus service may be stations. 5). Pedestrilisation between Rs. 5 to Rs.20,
required from Saket metro 7). Bicycle facilities is friendly the rate should be based
station to Sector 1, Sector 5, needed near INA metro environment needs on distance, not on fixed
Sector 4, PushpaBhavan, Saket station. to be developed price.
city mall and further back to 8). NMT options need to near the Kamala
Saket metro station. be enhanced especially Nehru Ridge.
10). Inner road need to be from Sarojini Nagar to INA
strengthened from Devli to metro station market or
Khanpur. from Sarojini Nagar railway
station to INA market,
Sarojini Market.

Strategies to Enhance Last Mile Connectivity in Passenger Waiting Anxiety: To reduce passenger waiting
Upcoming Smart Cities in India anxiety, PIS (Passengers information systems) boards needs
to be installed at all bus shelters, metro stations etc. The
Smart Transportation System: There should be smart system will uses Global Positioning System (GPS) technology
transportation system in a country like India for smart to determine location and time of the bus, predicting the
cities. The benefits of smart transportation systems are expected time of arrival in the particular destinations,
:- Interactive journey planner for all modes, automated these system will connects to the mobiles, and mobile user
vehicle location system, real time traffic information needs to send simple messages, Or connected through
systems, automatic fare collection system, Intelligent mobile apps for example: TRAKO <SPACE>PIS<SPACE>
signaling Systems, real time monitoring systems, parking MULTI MODAL VEHICLES NAME (Mobile users will instantly
management systems. receive a SMS response: Next Bus or mode at metro station
for Route Number expected in X minutes).

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Source: Smart and Connected Transport- A Case Study of Delhi

Figure 23.GPS tracking system and real time information
Multiuse Mobility Card: It is necessary to use multiuse (ATVMs) for all the networks like tram, bus, train and metro
mobility card for last mile connectivity. The multi-use services. The system also provides real time information
mobility card will help bring the various modes of transport about the connecting modes of transport for further
even closer. Now they will actually be integrated. It will journey.
not only make the journey convenient or easy but will also
increase the number of people using public transport. It Operations Control Centre: It is necessary to setting up
will encourage the citizens to use the public transit. Operations Control Centre, which will be the key hub for
all last mile multi modal based transportation activity.
Automatic Fare Collection System: AFCS will reduce
journey times by ensuring quicker boarding and alighting. Intelligent Signaling System: There should be intelligent
signaling system to enhance last mile connectivity and
Automatic Ticket Vending Machines: Passengers to buy seamless integration of all modes in the upcoming smart
tickets from the same Automatic Ticket Vending Machines cities of India.

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Source: Smart and Connected Transport- A Case Study of Delhi

Figure 24.(a) Multiuse mobility card; (b) Automatic ticket vending machine; (c) Operation control centre
Variable Messaging System: It is also necessary to install centre needs to be setup for booking and the dispatch of
variable messaging system in all cities, large LED boards auto rickshaws. GPS-based Vehicle Tracking System needs
needs to be installed at various points in the city. Messages to be installed in all auto rickshaws in the city and which
will be controlled through a central command centre. will establish separate call-centre facility.
Commuters will obtain information to assist their journeys
including traffic conditions, traffic advisory, route diversions Dial-a-Rickshaw Facility: It is also necessary to introduce
etc. Dial-a-Rickshaw facility “GreenCAB” as a feeder service for
the commuters who will use it as last mile connectivity
Electronic Road Pricing System: It is also necessary to modes. GreenCAB is an idea to provide door-to-door
Electronic road pricing system in all the congested arteries mobility for all classes of people along public transit
where public transport facilities are available for road user corridors in all the upcoming smart cities. GreenCAB can
charging. use mobile phones to provide a feeder from the doorstep
to public transit along the Delhi metro stations, bus routes
GPS-based Vehicle Tracking System: A separate call or other local destinations like schools, shops, etc.

Source: Smart and Connected Transport- A Case Study of Delhi

Figure 25.(a) Variable messaging systems; (b) Electronic road pricing; (c) Green CAB

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Fully Automated Locking System: For promoting cycle system, how bikes are checked in out from the parking
infrastructure for enhancing last mile connectivity, it is spaces and use of card technology.
necessary to introduced Park and ride facility. There is a
need of fully automated locking system that allows users Installation of CCTV Cameras and Solar Street Lights:
to check bicycle easily or out of bike share systems. For safety and security, it is necessary to install solar street
lights and CCTV cameras in all the streets of cities.
Radio Frequency Identification Devices: There is a
need for wireless tracking system such as radio frequency Mobile GIS Technology: GIS technology can be used in
identification devices (RFIDs), that locates within a bicycle these purposes. Mobile GIS technology can even deliver
is picked up, returned and identifies the users. intelligence out to officers, where and when they need it,
so they can quickly make the right decisions that need to
Use of Information Technology: Information technology be made.
should be related to customer register and pay for the

Figure 26.GIS technology for safety and security
RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device) based For example initiatives as high parking rates, parking hours/
Parking Management System: It is also necessary to day, parking days/month and designating drop off and
proposed RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device) pickup areas need to be introduced.
based parking management system is designed to efficiently
control the entrance and exit gates of parking facilities Biometric Device: Biometric device can be installed in
within a wide range of read distances. station parking areas and which will be linked with Adhaar
card to find out the actually distance between commuters
Parking Policy for Metro Stations: Parking policy for residents and various stations, which will help in charging
metro stations and other important destinations should more from people residing near stations rather than people
be formed to discourage increased private vehicle stations. who reside far from station. In this way, more number of
people will be used public transport.

Figure 27.RFID based Parking management system toolkit

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Special Signage to User Groups: It is necessary for special these user groups. While these suggested signage systems
mention of the needs of vulnerable road users such as help with pedestrian movement, an appropriate way-finding
pedestrians, cyclists and disabled people, and emphasizes strategy must be adopted by cities which ties in signage,
the importance of providing signage to cater to the needs of destinations, accessibility options and so on.

Figure 28.Proposed enhancing accessibility of last mile connectivity through intelligent systems; (a)
Proposed multi utility zone; (b) Proposed passenger information system; (c) Proposed RFID based parking
at Saket metro station; (d) Proposed Intelligent Signage system
Conclusion References
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