Future mobility hubs as social connector for the neighbourhood

Master Graduation Thesis Jelmer Koedood

5 March 2020

Poster of Jelmer’s project

Jelmer Koedood did research to the possible future role of intelligent mobility hubs that take an active role in a neighborhood community.

This project revolves around redesigning the future mobihub for the context of the Netherlands. A mobihub (or mobipunt in Dutch) is a brand of mobility hub.

In this report, a mobility hub is defined as
“A recognizable, physical place where different context-driven functions and services (mostly shared mobility-related such as shared cars) that benefit the neighbourhood meet. A connection to public transport is desirable but type-dependant.”

A typology of mobihubs was found and simplified to three types, with a special focus on the type: “neighbourhood hub”. Along with this, a target group was defined: the “suburban citizen”: people that live in a smaller neighbourhood and work in a bigger city.

This type of hub and target group determined the focus of the project. This focus was on social cohesion in the neighbourhood. Vision in Product Design (VIP) was used as the main design & research method.

In the research phase, a broad literature study was done, along with case studies in the Netherlands and interviews with users from the target group (Figure 1), amongst others.

It was found that users on a transport hub always navigate the space between being connected and being autonomous, while they experience positive or negative ‘friction’ (events that slow them down) during their travels. The amount of ‘being connected’ and ‘autonomy’ that a user experiences or seeks, depends on that users personality.

Based on this, the design statement was formed:
“The mobihub needs to wake up people by introducing a kind of positive friction (that literally and figuratively slows them down) at their local or commute mobihub, with which they can choose to interact, together or alone”

Find the full report here.