Safer roads for a better future with Ziegler Group
As a transport and logistics company, it is crucial for us to improve road safety, and to implement best practices in order to ensure safety. For this, Ziegler Belgium works closely with VIAS.
VIAS, headquartered in Brussels, is an independent knowledge institute for citizens, public bodies and businesses focused on improving road safety, mobility, security and health and is a leading partner in security for society and mobility.
To highlight our collaborative efforts with VIAS and discuss some of our new projects, we conducted an interview with Jean-François Gaillet (Chief Innovation Officer) and Annelies Develtere (Knowledge Group Manager) of VIAS.
What is VIAS’ current vision of the transport sector in Belgium?
We see some big challenges for the sector. One of them is the legislative and organizational complexity of the transport sector in Belgium, due to the fact that political authorizations exist at different levels (federal, regional, local).
Another challenge facing the sector is the congestion in Belgium and the impact on the environment. This has multiple causes. Belgium is a transit country, which means that a lot of traffic passes through Belgium to neighboring countries. Another challenge is that we have an incredibly dense transport network with many people who move every day between housing, the workplace, commercial and social areas.
However, in the face of these challenges, we also see a lot of opportunities. Due to congested roads, there are many opportunities to think outside the box and organize better multimodal and intermodal transport. There is plenty of room for innovative growth: transport companies should seek to foster and implement technological and organizational innovation to improve the environment and road safety.
We love seeing transport companies embrace multi-functional, user-centric transport systems and be able to offer transport solutions that are in tune with the future of mobility and take into account their impact on society and the environment.
What is your opinion on the current projects that Ziegler is working on? (Cargobike, Micro Hub, Fleet Electrification and Autonomous Vehicles)
We believe Ziegler’s efforts are going in the right direction and are very positive. Ziegler takes the initiative to be involved in new industry trends and has grown into a key player that acts as a pioneer and leads the way and is an example to other transport and logistics companies. We also find it positive that Ziegler involves local players from the start of these projects.
Furthermore, we see that Ziegler believes in change and develops new projects into competitive advantages and at the same time Ziegler strives to attain the goal of zero accidents/zero fatalities in the freight transport sector.
This is why we are looking forward to the projects Ziegler is working on and believe that as a key player in the market, Ziegler will be able to contribute its experience, as well as influence policy makers by continuing to share best practices and other key mobility and road safety data.
What projects is VIAS currently working on?
VIAS is one of the top 10 research institutes in Europe in the field of road safety and mobility. More than 40 research projects are carried out each year, which are the subject of public reports, scientific articles and presentations at scientific conferences.
Currently we are actively working on projects relating to the driving and parking behavior of last mile delivery operators (office of Petra De Sutter), e-commerce deliveries by light commercial vehicles and two-wheelers (office of Georges Gilkinet and SPF Mobilité), automated vehicles, the electrification of passenger cars and safety devices on trucks.
We focus our efforts on evidence-based research of the impact of innovation on mobility, road safety, environment, societal costs/benefits.