MaaS Investment Fund - Mobility as a Service

Overview

The aim of the MaaS Investment Fund (MIF) is to test, in a practical application, the viability of MaaS in Scotland.

In its 2018 Programme for Government, the Scottish Government committed to a £2 million investment fund, over three years, to support the testing of the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) concept in Scotland.

A key MaaS concept is to provide people with easy, digital access to travel information so they can be better informed as to the different ways to undertake their journey. This includes solutions to gather personalised travel requirements into a single travel app, for example, or perhaps a service to allow unlimited access to multiple transport providers via a monthly user fee.

This supports the Scottish Government agenda for a healthier, more sustainable Scotland in that, through providing better and more comprehensive travel information, more people feel empowered to use alternative ways to travel, encouraging them out of cars and private car ownership, and so reducing carbon emissions.

Criteria

The first round of applications closed in September 2019 with three projects awarded funding.

The second and final round of the MaaS Investment Fund identified applications that deliver MaaS solutions that best fit Scottish Government agendas and selected thematic areas.

The pilot projects had to demonstrate that they:

  • showed a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) MaaS service / solution that can be applied within the realm of Scotland’s public transport (traditional, active or emerging) travel networks
  • were at a ready stage - the MVP is in a competent state for progression, requiring minimal further development in order to be delivered within MIF timescales and maximise impact of the proposed pilot
  • provided evidenced based market / business research including expected impact(s)
  • outlined risks and mitigations
  • provided a commercial strategy, demonstrating a sustainable business model, expected growth and/or development potential
  • are delivery focused, rather than pure research
  • identified a location for the project within Scotland
  • addressed a challenge within the Scottish marketplace
  • demonstrated how the service / solution is applied in current Scottish market conditions, and that a co-creation approach, or similar, has been taken, with all relevant stakeholder group(s) engaged
  • demonstrated that the proposed solution is compatible with, or working towards integration with, existing Scottish public transport smart technology infrastructure / specifications (for example cEMV, mobile and ITSO)

Scotland’s public transport networks include all traditional modes, active travel options as well as future / emerging mobility modes such as electric or connected autonomous vehicles.

Funding

The MaaS Investment Fund (MIF) was open to public, private and/or third sector organisations looking to undertake a MaaS pilot in Scotland.

Conditions of funding were:

  • As a competitive fund, each project was evaluated against the outlined criteria and weighted accordingly
  • Successful applications achieving maximum points were considered for up to 100% of their requested funding sought from the MIF. Within the context of this fund ‘requested funding sought from MIF’ was defined as follows: 
    • Total Projected Cost of MaaS Pilot
    • Less committed match funding from other sources
    • Less any revenue stream
  • Unmatched funding proposals were only considered in relation to third sector applications, with successful applications only attracting a maximum contribution from the fund of £20,000
  • Funding applications below £5,000 were not considered for this fund
  • In-kind contributions and pre-development product or service research expenditure were not covered by this fund
  • Limited product or service development in advance of testing/demonstration was considered for funding where it was shown that such developments were required to maximise impact of any pilot. These included, but were not limited to, minor product evolutions to meet local requirements and limited user feedback/service design approaches to ensure maximum impact. Implementation, marketing and evaluation costs were also included
  • Funding was awarded on an accruals basis, i.e. bidders receive funding on presentation of paid invoices and provision of evidence in support of staffing costs. To note the Transport Scotland procurement process is payment within 10 days of receipt of invoices.

The £2 million MIF was available for distribution over three financial years, from 2019/20 to 2021/22.

How to apply

Applications for Round 1 of the MaaS Investment Fund closed in September 2019 and culminated in the award of three pilots, while applications for Round 2 closed in February 2021, with two pilots awarded funds.

Stakeholder engagement

Transport Scotland has developed a working group with subject experts and the MaaS Scotland organisation to support this commitment. The working group’s aims are to:

  • support awareness and interest in the MaaS Investment Fund, shaping areas of expertise
  • align with the Scottish Government’s wider intelligent mobility goals
  • liaise with key stakeholders across Scotland to develop MaaS challenges with measurable deliverables.

In order to shape the MaaS Investment Fund (MIF), for Round 1, consultation workshops were held in Glasgow and Perth in May 2019, with a pre-interest registration process concluding on 29 May to assist those potentially interested in applying to the MIF.

While COVID-19 has meant that face to face workshops and meetings for Round 2 have been unable to proceed as planned, a virtual workshop was hosted by MaaS Scotland on 10 September 2020. The workshop provided an opportunity to introduce the new thematics areas and initial details on timelines and processes associated with Round 2.

Projects

HITRANS

HITRANS are working in partnership with IBI planning and engineering consultants, and Arcadis MaaS design consultants on a project delivering MaaS across the Highlands & Islands.

The project seeks to bring together journey planning, real time data, multi-modes of public, active and sharing transport, and ticket purchasing into one app - GO-HI - thereby reducing reliance on private car trips.

It has the potential to reach around 500,000 residents and 600,000 tourists across the region and was awarded £445,000 funding in December 2019. Hitrans, working in partnership with ProxiSmart, Enterprise Holdings, University of Leeds, and Fleetondemand Mobility UK were also successful in securing funds in Round 2 for an extension to their current GO-HI pilot to include additional transport modes, a rewards programme, smart card integration and a demand responsive transport solution for rural and island regions.

Further details of GO-HI can be found on the HITRANS website.

Tactran

Tactran will lead and work with digital partners to deliver the project.

The project has pilot locations agreed with NHS Tayside, Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park (LLTNP) and Dundee and Angus College.

It looks to run three pilots that bring together journey planning, real time data, multi-modes of public, active and sharing transport, facilities information, personalised booking and ticket purchasing with integrated rewards system in one app.

It has the potential to reach 120-140 patients of Perth Royal Infirmary per week, up to 4 million visitors to LLTNP per year and 23,000 college students and was awarded £550,000 funding in December 2019.

Dundee City Council

This project seeks to support people attending events in the Dundee area and will provide better information about public, shared and active travel options to venues, as well as improving travel ticketing options at the point of purchasing event tickets.

Funding for this project is being allocated following a co-creative approach developed as part of Round One, and as such has not depleted the remaining £1.05 million funding for Round Two of the investment fund.

University of St Andrews/Urban Foresight

This project is focused on St Andrews and the North-West corridor Leuchars train station/Eden Campus-Guardbridge/St Andrews Links and the Royal Burgh of St Andrews, specifically focusing on connections to and from St Andrews to Scotland’s major settlements. The MaaSterplan is a comprehensive framework of integrated pilots encompassing new and existing transportation modes, digital tools (Apps), physical infrastructure, programs, and interventions to address commuters and tourists' needs.

It will pilot innovative solutions that improve the travel experience, facilitate trip chain options and enable people to leave their car at home confidently. It will also show how the integration of multiple MaaS Apps and services can prioritise low carbon modes and quantify emissions per trip.