Blue Wave goes international. After the successful introduction of the concept along the Twente canals in October 2019, the consortium consisting of Panteia and 4Shipping will now roll out the concept in Flanders. The Mobility and Public Works Department of the Flemish government has awarded a subsidy for this purpose. This is because the project contributes to the goals of the Flemish government: more efficient transport, better traffic flow, chain cooperation and cross-port digital infrastructure.
Blue Golf Twente canals brought inland navigation a lot of positive results, including a chartering application, a strategic and multimodal route planner and a one-stop-shop solution where inland skippers can consult all relevant information about waterways, water levels and structures. This means that the application can be seen as a combination of Booking.com and Google Maps, but for inland shipping. In the "Blue Golf Flanders" project, this concept is being rolled out internationally. This ensures that inland skippers no longer have to use all kinds of applications to plan an international voyage; all relevant information is made available in one location.
Improved functionality of the existing application
Users of the platform will notice that there are more and better insights into the facilities on Flemish waterways, including locations and occupation of berths. A more accurate estimate is also given on the expected arrival time of a ship. This is because work will take place on waiting time prediction at the locks on the busiest inland shipping corridors and because the influence of the tides is included in the forecasts.
The marketplace module will also be further improved. Not only do we expect an influx of Flemish cargo traded via the platform, we also contribute to paperless transport by digitizing the exchange of transport documents. Shippers receive up-to-date insight into the status of their transport with the help of track & trace.
Panteia and 4Shipping are also using the project to adapt the data flows behind the application to the new international standard set by the Flemish Waterway with the VisuRIS application. Fourteen European waterway managers are currently implementing this standard at national level in the European RIS-Comex project. In this way, we guarantee the sustainable utilisation of the application in the future.
The application makes an important contribution to making the Flemish and European inland shipping sector more sustainable. By increasing the cargo offer on the platform, we make it possible to prevent empty trips. This will also have a positive effect on the waiting time at locks; after all, fewer empty ships need to be articulated. We also contribute to modal shift objectives by reducing the total transport costs, among other things, by reducing the administrative tasks involved in inland waterway transport. We also improve the flow on the waterways through up-to-date insight and predictions about crowds and waiting times so that skippers can anticipate.
Panteia and 4shipping are working on the expansion of the Blue Wave application from now until the end of 2022. Users can simply use the platform; new functionalities will be added periodically.
The Blue Wave application can be accessed via the following link: app.4shipping.com
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