SMART Mobility Urban Science Capstone Report: U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE); DOE/EE-2065

Stanley Young, Andrew Duvall, Venu Garikapati, Patricia Romero Lankao, Joshua Sperling, Alejandro Henao, Paul Waddell, Husain Aziz, Hong Wang, John Beck, Yi Hou

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


The Urban Science (US) Pillar focuses on maximum-mobility and minimum-energy opportunities associated with emerging transportation and transportation-related technologies specifically within the urban context. Such technologies, often referred to as automated, connected, efficient (or electrified), and shared (ACES), have the potential to greatly improve mobility and related quality of life in urban areas. Although all the pillars share some commonalities, Urban Science strives to model, analyze, and gain insights from the perspective of human settlements (the “city”) as a living organism. This is especially critical as the United States is one of the most urbanized countries, and as more and more of the global population migrates to urban areas. Note that the urban mobility system, more so than suburban or rural systems, consists of a rich mixture that goes beyond roads and vehicles, and includes significant investments in public transit, private mobility services (such as taxis and transportation network companies, or TNCs), significant parking reserves, and curb management practices, not to mention the abundance of emerging on-demand micromobility services for the movement of people and goods such as e-bikes and scooters, which make the urban space a dynamic laboratory for mobility. Urban spaces also concentrate employment, markets, services, and attractions, which are the destinations for most trips. The concentration of human activities and ensuing density also creates the need and emphasis for space efficiency in urban environments, which is not a constraint in suburban or rural contexts. This rich mixture of transportation and mobility infrastructure and practice, combined with global urbanization trends, make urban spaces a critical focus of research for developing energy efficient mobility systems (EEMS).
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages82
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

See SMART Mobility Urban Science Capstone Report at

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5400-75702


  • curb management
  • mobility
  • transportation
  • transportation network companies
  • urban science
  • urbanization


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