Research Projects

Generating Opportunity for All (GOAL): Micro-Freight Hubs Feasibility in North Fort Smith, Arkansas

Project Funder: 
Urban Freight Lab & Frontier Metropolitan Planning Organization, City of Fort Smith, Arkansas
Project Manager(s): 
Project Timing: 
September 2021 to February 2022
Project Description: 

(This project is being conducted under the Urban Freight Lab's (UFL) Technical Assistance Program, where UFL contributes to the project by providing 1:1 match funds in terms of staff and/or research assistants to complete project tasks.)

This project seeks to examine how micro-freight hubs can increase equity to services, benefit historically marginalized communities, and be joined to share micromobility options, social service agencies and minority businesses in North Fort Smith, Arkansas. 

The Urban Freight Lab will assist Frontier MPO and the City of Fort Smith by sharing knowledge and providing feedback as they develop a cohesive strategy to develop a micro-freight hub pilot project that leverages community resources. 

The proposed goal is to create a cohesive strategy to develop a sound planning process, to grow collaborative relationships, to produce a sustainable business model, and to implement a micro-freight hub pilot project that leverages community resources. 

Summary of Project Phases and Associated Tasks:

  • Assessment Phase
    • Task 1: Gather and review background information regarding the plans, policies, codes, and data related to establishing and implementing micro-freight hubs within North Fort Smith.
    • Task 2: Conduct literature review on micro-freight hub operations and business model.
    • Task 3: Gather, review, and provide feedback on existing partnerships and stakeholders.
    • Task 4: Identify and review potential micro-freight hub locations particularly locations that will enhance accessibility to vulnerable groups
  • Outreach and Learning Phase
    • Task 1: Deliver virtual interactive coaching session on establishing and building collaborative relationships and pilot lessons learned.
    • Task 2: Convene community champions, partners, freight carriers, and other stakeholders to develop clear understanding of community and stakeholder needs, concerns, and challenges.
    • Task 3: Develop next steps and any action plans for moving a micro-freight hub forward.

Partner Organization: Frontier Metropolitan Planning Organization, City of Fort Smith, Arkansas

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