Atkins Acuity's outlook for GCC transport post-COVID-19

Published: 11 May 2020 - 9 a.m.

Atkins Acuity, a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group, has released a report to inform consumers about the potential implications that COVID-19 may have on the Middle East’s transport sector.

Named COVID-19 and Transport, the White Paper is designed to inform the public about the challenges and opportunities that the pandemic will present.

The White Paper was written by Atkins Acuity Middle East’s director for strategic transport policy and planning, Jonathan Spear, and the firm’s senior director Roger Cruickshank.

The authors revealed that general traffic has estimated to have fallen by around four-fifths dependent on area, whilst international benchmarking suggests road freight may have halved.

However, they outline that the role of transport agencies has been strengthened, which they said raises a need for “enhanced organisational leadership and joint working” to common goals across agencies.

The long-term implications of transport will also need to be assessed, according to Cruickshank Spear, who said we will need to assess how and in what form demand will recover across modes and networks, together with associated issues such as transport revenues, congestion, emissions and carbon footprint.

They added that COVID-19 could “accelerate the agenda” for digital transformation, what role technology will play in automating key functions, vehicles and infrastructure assets, and whether crisis management could shape the design of the next generation of Intelligent Transport Systems and Smart Cities.

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