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Getting a Better Picture through Ridealongs

Getting a Better Picture through Ridealongs
Getting a Better Picture through Ridealongs
February 12, 2020   //   

FEBRUARY 12, 2020 — At the Urban Freight Lab, we study the urban logistics environment and test solutions to overcome some of the challenges carriers face in delivering goods and freight in urban areas. As researchers, we immensely value learning first-hand about the challenges drivers and carriers face everyday in delivering and picking up goods and freight in urban areas, and how they deal with these challenges.

We want our work to be useful for logistics and freight companies, so we developed a program in which our researchers perform “ridealongs” with experienced delivery drivers to gain a better understanding their daily work.

We have completed several ridealongs, observing experienced drivers performing deliveries and pickups in a variety of settings, from groceries to parcels. Through these experiences we have been able to observe needs, preferences, and challenges for delivery drivers to efficiently perform their work in busy urban areas. These observations have been used to test new ways to allocate commercial vehicle loading zones and to identify locations lacking parking for these vehicles.


On the SCTL Blog: SCTL Rides Along with UPS
Photos from our Ridealongs

Get Involved: The purpose of ridealongs is for our team to observe drivers’ parking choices and work environment to inform decision-making so that our solutions best support their work processes. Are you willing to host a ridealong with our researchers? Contact Giacomo Dalla Chiara.

In the Media

Greenbiz: How the Urban Freight Lab seeks to fix the last 50 feet of shipping

​Geekwire: Researchers tackle the ‘final 50 feet’ of delivery challenge as online shopping spikes

PNNL: How to Deliver a Package on Time

About the Urban Freight Lab (UFL): An innovative public-private partnership housed at the Supply Chain Transportation & Logistics Center at the University of Washington, the Urban Freight Lab is a structured workgroup that brings together private industry with City transportation officials to design and test solutions around urban freight management.

About the Final 50 Feet Research Program: The Urban Freight Lab’s Final 50 Feet research program designs and tests solutions to improve delivery at the end of the supply chain—beginning at a load/unload parking space at the curb, in an alley, or in a private loading bay, and maneuvering through sidewalks, intersections, and building security, and ending with the final customer.