This Plenary Session, titled Innovative Infrastructure for Europe 2030, will foster the discussion of the main issues surrounding the future of transport infrastructure in Europe and beyond, considering the vision and goals set in relevant strategic documents such as the European Green Deal and the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy, as well as the financing opportunities for infrastructure provided by the European Recovery and Resilience Plan.
Traffic on Europe’s roads and railways is increasing while much of the continent’s transport infrastructure is ageing and facing new climate-related challenges. This is increasing the risk of accidents and undermines efficiency. Investments have been and continue to be made to complete the physical TEN-T network, but there are still many bottlenecks and operational obstacles to cross-border multimodal freight and passenger transport. At the same time, transport infrastructure is now facing new challenges and opportunities from energy transition and digitalization. It is important to improve how European infrastructure is designed, built, maintained, and operated taking into account the three dimensions: physical, energy, and digital.
New insights from research are needed to understand if and how the physical infrastructure needs to be altered to enable the deployment of alternative fuels and connectivity. New business and governance models, including procurement, can speed up the deployment of new technologies and enhance the passenger experience of cross-border travel. Widespread adoption of 5G connectivity will enable new services, optimize the use of existing infrastructure, and boost automation in all modes of transport.