On 12 October 2021, RESOLVE partners virtually met again for the official launch of “RESOLVE+”, the one-year extension granted to the project in the framework of the INTERREG call for proposals of additional activities linked to the COVID-19 recovery.

The extension represents a crucial opportunity for project partners to bring interregional learning one step further, by exchanging solutions on how to keep reducing carbon emissions created by retail-related traffic in city centers even in the post-pandemic context.

In many European countries, in fact, the COVID-19 emergency had detrimental effects on the results achieved by the cities in terms of carbon reduction and promotion of more sustainable mobility patterns and in terms of retail activities. Among the most evident reasons, it is worth mentioning:

  • A dramatic increase in online shopping associated with an extraordinary growth in traffic related to deliveries
  • A significant decrease in the number of visitors in urban centres, putting at risk the existence of many retail activities and other attractions.
  • A shift from public transport use towards car use for visiting downtown retail areas, and creating a demand from some retailers for similar “accessibility” in city centres.

In the next year of activities, RESOLVE+ partners will especially focus on supporting key decision-makers to understand the implications and opportunities of the “new reality” in the field of local retail economy, sustainable urban mobility and promotion of city centers’ attractiveness. In particular, partner cities will exchange experiences on the following topics:

  • Urban mobility and carbon reduction (lower ridership on buses, more direct deliveries, parcel machines)
  • Carbon reduction and city centers’ attractiveness (‘a place to be’ as well as ‘a place to buy’)
  • COVID and the public domain: providing safe and attractive environments (open spaces, public transport, logistics, waste)

At local level, the main objective of the project will remain the improvement of the selected policy instruments, through the lessons learnt in the interregional exchange and the active collaboration with the local stakeholder groups. More than ever, the motto of the partnership will be “MAKE IT WORK FOR YOU!”, an invitation to make the most out of the opportunities provided by this new, exciting year of learning and exchange among European cities.

The first two appointments for RESOLVE+ partners are the 2 online PEER REVIEW events, led by the Erasmus Centre for Urban, Port and Transport Economics and addressing COVID and carbon reduction in retailing and urban mobility. The two workshops will take place on the following dates:

  • Peer Review 1: Monday 29 November at 13.00
  • Peer Review 2: Thursday 16 December at 9.00

Stay tuned!