While new mobility innovations predominantly address transportation needs in emerging and dynamic urban centers, vitally-important remote agricultural regions face their own mobility challenges that could benefit from new thinking and advanced technology. Can we develop a mobility system that ensures economic sustainability and quality of life in aging rural communities?
The Ueyama District of Japan, located in a bountiful area among 8,300 rice terraces, has a proud history of agriculture and forestry. However, like other rural, mountainous regions in the world, Ueyama faces issues such as an aging and declining population, as well as limited, decreasing public transportation services that make access difficult for elderly residents, young agriculture workers, and tourists.
To address these needs and promote regional revitalization, TMF is working with local non-profit organizations, in cooperation with businesses, local governments, and universities to create a new, multi-modal transportation system in Ueyama. TMF plans to share the learning from this project so that similar communities around the world can replicate its success.
- January 2016
- September 2019
- Conduct comprehensive needs assessment with input from local residents
- Host an idea-a-thon challenge to crowdsource innovative solutions
- Introduce new forms of transportation and revenue-generating services, including a rental fleet of ultra-small personal electric vehicles well-suited to mountainous regions
- Implement a sustainable mobility model that grows the agricultural economy and expands tourism