Tallinn University of Technology

One of the pilotprojects of Smart City challenge is a solution, which idea is to offer a conceptual ecosystem solution to transport system management of the near future, where additionally to the existing means of transport, self-driving shuttles and micro mobility solutions are going to play an important role and user centric approach is highly required.


The idea is to develop a new conceptual ecosystem solution for transport system management of the near future, where additionally to the existing means of transport, first/last mile self-driving shuttles and micro mobility solutions are going to play an important role. To get people to choose more frequently public transport instead of their personal cars in urban environment, a significatly more flexible and user-friendly approach is highly required, which is also one of the project’s priorities. One of the main outcomes of the pilot project is  data exchange platform of different transport systems, that enables unified data exchange between different service providers and end-user appications.

The pilot will test an interconnected on-demand based full transport solution from passenger’s home (in this pilot from Rae parish) to capital city hubs (i.e. Ülemiste City & Tallinn harbour) and beyond (i.e. over the sea to Helsinki). The data exchange platform will be connected with existing municipal/governmental databases and creates open-access new data sets in order to offer personalized on-demand pro-active services. The practical pilot includes self-driving AV shuttles on-demand service in sub-urban areas connected to main public transport and micro mobility service providers in the capital city. AV shuttles are going to be remanufactured from end-of-life electrical vehicles in order to re-engineer the electromechanical platform and lithium batteries, thus significantly reducing the environmental footprint and making AV shuttles affordable to local counties. The final outcome of the project will be future city transport model, that has been tested in real urban environment and implementation toolkit for cities and urban areas all over the world. Project’s main partners are Aalto University in Finland, City of Tallinn and Rae Parish, as well as a wide circle of external partners in government, other universities, private companies and non-profit organizations.

The whole solution will be designed and piloted by keeping in mind the wider aspect, repeatability and scalability issues. Interfaces and software components will be compatible with standards and similar developments in governmental and international level. While setting up and conducting the pilot project - the next selection of Estonian counties and local authorities will be chosen, in order to allow smooth transfer and cloning of previously developed solutions. Interested counties will be invited to monitor and study the pilot in Rae parish. At the end of the project, results of the pilot and good practices will be wrapped as a modular concept and guidelines, reporting how to clone the solution nationally and internationally.

The key aspects of the pilot:

  1. Environmentally sustainable
  2. Novel public transport data exchange MaaS platform, that will connect people in rural areas to big road transport corridors as well as main transport hubs in big cities
  3. User-centric on-demand transportation planning service
  4. Big data collection renewed in real-time by autonomous vehicles
  5. The ability to offer services based on AI and big data

The main research topics the pilot project is focusing on:

  • Developing the concept of transport management ecosystem based on new technologies
  • The structure of big data and implementation of AI methods to develop new services
  • The technological solution of collecting big data by combining sensors’ (lidar, radar, camera) outputs
  • Autonomous vehicles effect and demands to infrastucture and city planning
  • Circular economy example solution of rebuilding electrical vehicles and reusage of lithium batteries
  • Safety assessment methodology, testing and validation of Autonomous Vehicles

With additional research potential through getting extensive data from experiments, user experiences, creating methodology, modelling & simulations to safely bring autonomous vehicles on our streets.

This project is led by Prof. Raivo Sell from TalTech.

There are four Smart City pilot projects that have been chosen from Smart City Challenge 2020 and in 2021 two more ideas will be chosen. This pilot programme is managed by the Smart City Centre of Excellence and financed by the European Regional Development Fund and the Estonian Ministry of Research and Education.