Horizon Europe - New railway station concept for green and socially inclusive smart cities

Deadline :
December 14, 2022 5:00 PM

Brussels time

Project Duration:
24 months
Funding available:
EUR 700,000
Partners required:
At least one independent legal entity established in a Member State; and at least two other independent legal entities, each established in different Member States or Associated Countries

Funding programme

Horizon Europe is the EU’s key funding programme for research and innovation.

Read more about the Horizon Europe programme here.

Call overview

This call aims to develop a shared methodology for transforming railway stations into socio-technical systems operating as city’s greening engines and new urban hubs.

Call detail

The project stemming from this topic should develop a shared methodology for transforming existing stations or designing new ones into socio-technical systems operating as city’s greening engines for the surrounding environment, and new urban hubs aggregating multiple services for the users and its citizens. In this respect, the project will integrate and contribute to the EU-Rail Multi-Annual Work Programme – Flagship Area 4 – A Sustainable and Green Rail System as well as to the European Union New EU Urban Mobility Framework.

The R&I work should contribute to:

  • The achievement of a climate-neutral society,
  • The implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (sustainable, smart and inclusive cities, transport and infrastructure, resources management, climate mitigation and adaptation, reduction in the emissions of greenhouse gases, health, environmental protection and biodiversity regeneration, sustainable land use, and gender equality),
  • Railway stations to become connectivity hubs connect for multimodal mobility services, for passengers and goods, and the rest of the urban environment,
  • Railway Stations will be inclusive and foster equal access to public transport for all
  • Railway stations to become the new urban vital centre, fostering collaborative and circular economy, and social services,
  • Ability to exploit the potential of railway stations as installations of advanced engineering solutions for sustainable solutions (stations as: infrastructure networks, multimodal freight terminals, telecommunications nodes, energy hubs, water distribution and waste disposal, etc),
  • Ability to respond to health crises, natural disasters and resilience considering the modularity aspects that would make feasible to readapt or convert spaces to different typologies according to the needs,
  • Bring together station managers, infrastructure managers and railway operators, local administrations, public and private transport operators, urban and logistic planners, new mobility service /delivery providers, Union institutions, , passengers and citizens’ representative bodies, NGOs, and research institutions, but also other rail and non-rail (e.g. energy supplier/operator) industry, SMEs and start-ups as needed, around a common plan targeted to the urban environment surrounding while providing an institutional framework to the model that will be created,

The adoption of a EU wide model for the new railway stations, taking into account the local ad regional contexts, that should help local and national administrations achieving the following objectives:  

  • Foster territorial cohesion through public transport and alternative mobility solutions
  • Decarbonise mobility and urban energy sources,
  • Implementation of the circular economy principles within the businesses and services operated in the station,
  • Promotion of new partnerships, especially between public administrations, large industrial groups, local institutions and SMEs while integrating citizens and collaborative small-sized solutions into the overall planning and policy-making process.

Scope

The project stemming from this topic shall contribute to deliver the expected outcomes and the R&I work includes:

  • The development of analytical tools that will support the methodology for evaluating the costs and benefits of broadening the original purpose and functions of a railway station in the context of urban planning and mobility (from a simple departure/arrival point to a dense node of mobility, economic and social activities) as well as smart grids and energy performance (and any relevant station transformation),
  • The definition of sustainability indicators (including social, economic environmental and resiliency dimensions) guiding the methodology, taking into account the existing Sustainable Urban Mobility Indicator.
  • The definition of a common European-wide framework or methodology that, while enabling a sufficient latitude to accommodate specific local conditions or prevailing opportunities, may still guarantee opportunities to scale up the “model” to applicability across the EU. The requested methodology for enhancing the performance of new/existing stations integrated in smart cities should cover, among the other expected outcomes described above, particularly aspects related to the energy behaviour (stations as energy hubs integrated in the smart grids and, as such, improving the energy performance of the smart city), aspects related to the mobility and urban planning, for both passengers and goods, as well as aspects related to users’ experience.

The implementation of at least four (4) specific pilot “Living Labs” (in four different Member States and including one station in regional areas serving capillary lines) that will investigate how stakeholders and citizenship can fully benefit from the new station model proposed for those specific pilots:  

  • It is expected that the applicant will setup the living labs making use of workshops, being the occasion to collaborate with local partners and civil society in order to understand which operative options can make railway stations and their surrounding neighbourhoods becoming the primary driver of sustainable practices of mobility, logistics and work, and resilient infrastructures able to readapt when necessary,
  • Methodological criteria and quantitative/qualitative deliverables are expected to stem from the four pilots, tacking the co-design and the transformation of railway stations into multi-service infrastructures,
  • A final conference for each pilot showcasing the achieved results should be organised.

Take stock of the output of the new station model proposed for those four specific pilots and integrate the results to fine-tune the proposed European-wide methodology of the new railway station.

Eligibility

To be eligible for funding, applicants must be established in one of the eligible countries, i.e.:

  • the Member States of the European Union, including their outermost regions;
  • the Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) linked to the Member States;
  • eligible non-EU countries including countries associated to Horizon Europe and low- and middle-income countries.

Any legal entity, regardless of its place of establishment, including legal entities from non-associated third countries or international organisations (including international European research organisations 1) is eligible to participate (whether it is eligible for funding or not), provided that the conditions laid down in the Horizon Europe Regulation have been met, along with any other conditions laid down in the specific call topic.

A ‘legal entity’ means any natural or legal person created and recognised as such undernational law, EU law or international law, which has legal personality and which may, acting in its own name, exercise rights and be subject to obligations, or an entity without legal personality.

Consortium composition

Unless otherwise provided for in the specific call conditions, legal entities forming a consortium are eligible to participate in actions provided that the consortium includes:

  • at least one independent legal entity established in a Member State; and
  • at least two other independent legal entities, each established in different Member States or Associated Countries.

Budget

The total budget for this call is EUR 700,000.

Apply now

Deadline :
December 14, 2022 5:00 PM

Brussels time

Project Duration:
24 months
Funding available:
EUR 700,000
Partners required:
At least one independent legal entity established in a Member State; and at least two other independent legal entities, each established in different Member States or Associated Countries