Mapunity receives Volvo Sustainable Mobility Award 2011
Volvo Buses in India announced the winner of the first Volvo Sustainable Mobility Award 2011 – an award instituted by Volvo to encourage positive initiatives to support sustainable Mobility. The winner for the award was Mapunity with an award prize of 700,000 INR. While there was no runner up, Praja received special recognition with support of 250,000 INR. KSRTC & BMTC received awards for Unique Initiatives in the category “Excellence in Public Transport”.
This is the first edition of the award. The response to this was encouraging wherein Volvo received entries from a wide spectrum of people – professionals, academics, institutes, operators and students.
The Volvo Sustainable Mobility Awards aims at creating a culture of supporting progressive and practical steps, positively engaging the world around us to deliver sustainable transport solutions and thereby better quality of life in the cities. Volvo Buses aims to use this award to engage with all the stakeholders in public transportation, supporting them and also learning in the process.
The Volvo Sustainable Mobility Award jury adjudged Mapunity as the winner for its project. The winner was given trophy, certificate and reward money of 700,000 INR. According the jury members, Mapunity has used an innovative approach to study the travel patterns in order to realise the most efficient bus routes. With the Direction Based (Bus) Service they have also used a completely new way of thinking when setting up the network of bus lines. Not only that they have taken the step to realise the new bus services, but the implementation seems to be quite successful in its first try. That is truly rare and a breakthrough in applying the travel information to increase the efficiency of bus routes. The efficiency increase is twofold:
i) The bus is utilised in a more efficient way with higher occupancy
ii) The increased efficiency is attracting more passengers and can thus avoid other less efficient means of city transports such as three wheelers and cars.
While there was no Runners Up to the award, Praja – a citizen Group – was conferred with Special Recognition. This award to Praja, included recognition for their work towards mobilising public support to multiple urban transport initiatives such as metro rail, city bus services, bus priority system, cycle transport, and more. The jury was unanimous in acknowledging Praja’s efforts and on its part Volvo Buses has committed to support the group with an amount of 250,000 INR. The jury concurred that Praja has a structured approach backed by excellent fieldwork & have presented innovative approaches to deal with the issue of sustainable transport.
The jury was positively surprised with excellent ideas that have been shared in this first edition of the Award. However, while many projects are promising, they need to go that extra step to see results versus their original objective. The Volvo Sustainability Award is evaluated under the following criteria: understanding the problem; innovative & relevant approach; actions taken; and results.
Excellence in Public Transport
The jury conferred awards for ‘Excellence in Public Transport’ to the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) and the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) for their unique initiatives.
BMTC was given this award for the Vayu Vajra Service connecting the city to the airport. This service has become a benchmark, which has been adopted by other cities in India
On the other hand, KSRTC was acknowledged for its initiative in starting a public transport service in the tier II city of Tumkur, near Bangalore. With this initiative KSRTC has shown the way by pre-empting a demand and creating a system that can evolve as the city grows.
The jury comprised of Shri. MK Shankarlinge Gowda, Principal Secretary (Transport), Govt. of Karnataka as the Chairman, along with Mr. Edward Jobson, Environment Director, Volvo Bus Corporation, Prof. TG Sitharam, Chairman, CiSTUP, Indian Institute of Science and Mr. Vinay Rao, Independent Advisor on Climate Change and Sustainability.