Aggelos Soteropoulos
Aggelos Soteropoulos is researcher at the Institute for Transportation System Planning at the Technical University of Vienna. He holds a Diploma in Spatial Planning (2015) with specialization areas in Transportation Planning and Spatial Analysis. His research focuses on the effects of automated vehicles on the transport system, mobility and settlement development. Currently he’s working within several research projects (AVENUE21, REBOUND, SAFiP) in this area and is also writing his doctoral thesis in this field. His interests lie in the field of transportation modelling and spatial analyses.

Description of the Thesis
Looking back in history, the development of cities and settlements has always been closely linked to transport and the development of technological mobility innovations. Until the middle of the 19th century journeys were almost entirely on foot, but transport infrastructure networks and their improvements have transformed the shape of human settlements from walking cities to car-dependent suburbs (Kasraian, 2016: 2). At the same time, the increasing extension of the settlement area and the associated increasing separation of human locations for activities required an increasing mobility of persons and goods (Wegener, 2009: 2). As cities got larger (and as technologies advanced), they acquired new transportation networks relying on different motive power (Levinson, 2008: 58): “Stations opened on the sites of residential expansions, highways were improved at their bottlenecks and faster trains were introduced to answer the travel demand of a growing population who increasingly wishes to becoming more mobile” (Kasraian, 2016: 3). Land use and transport are interdependent and form an interaction – linked with the key factor of accessibility – which is embedded in political, economic and social processes.The new technological mobility innovation of automated driving, which seems no longer just fantasy or fiction, could completely change transport services and mobility in the coming years and decades. Several different use cases of automated vehicles (see e.g. Wachenfeld et al., 2015; Lenz & Fraedrich, 2015) are feasible that could either complement or replace existing transport services. This will result in changes in the transport supply and encompasses mainly aspects of comfort, time, reliability, costs or operation costs and safety (Milakis et al., 2017). These changes in the transport supply will have impacts on accessibility and the transport demand (Alessandrini, 2015; Friedrich & Hartl, 2016; European Commission, 2016). Initially, this will affect everyday mobility, like activities, number of journeys, length of journeys or the choice of means of transport. In the long-term there will possibly be impacts on the location choice of households, firms and public institutions and hence the settlement structure. However, as the interaction of transport and land use is embedded in political, economic and social processes, also other factors like (a) individual characteristics and needs of persons, households and firms, (b) area attractiveness and land availability or the supply of dwellings, (c) mobility and spatial politics and (d) other accompanying technological developments play a role. Moreover, the availability of land and the construction activity of investors and therefore the supply of dwellings is affected by the potential conversion of parking spaces due to automated vehicles (Moreno, 2017), showing the high complexity of the impacts of automated driving within the interaction of land use and transport.The thesis focuses on the investigation of the transport impacts of various use cases of automated vehicles in different spatial structures or spatial types and on the analysis of possible spatial impacts on the basis of different scenarios. The main research questions are:

  • What are the transport impacts of certain use cases AV in different spatial structures (or in an urban region)?
  • Which spatial impacts are to be expected by certain use cases in different spatial structures (or on the urban regional level)?
  • What kind of utilization of autonomous vehicles (use cases) appears to be desirable with regard to existing and future targets in settlement development?
  • Which possible options for actions or accompanying measures can be derived with regard to existing and future targets in settlement development? How would they have an impact?

The development of scenarios regarding the composition of the transport supply is done by the utilization of different use cases of automated vehicles based on the findings of the research projects “AVENUE21” and “SAFiP”. Several scenarios including different use cases and probably different spatial structures or spatial types are used. The simulation and modelling of the scenarios will be done using MATSim.



Alessandrini, A., Campagna, A., Delle Site, P., Flilippi, F., Persia, L. (2015). Automated Vehicles and the Rethinking of Mobility and Cities. Transportation Research Procedia, 5, 145-160.

European Commission (2016). Gear 2030 Discussion Paper. Roadmap on Highly Automated vehicles. Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs.

Friedrich, M., & Hartl, M. (2016). Schlussbericht MEGAFON – Modellergebnisse geteilter autonomer Fahrzeugflotten des öffentlichen Nahverkehrs. University of Stuttgart. Institute for Road and Transport Science.

Kasraian, D., Maat, K., Stead, D., van Wee, B. (2016). Long- term impacts of transport infrastructure networks on land-use change: an international review of empirical studies, Transport Reviews, 36(6), 772-792.

Lenz, B., Fraedrich, E. (2015). Neue Mobilitätskonzepte und autonomes Fahren: Potenziale der Veränderung. In: Maurer, M., Gerdes J. C., Lenz, B., Winner, H. (Ed.): Autonomes Fahren. Technische, rechtliche und gesellschaftliche Aspekte. Springer. Heidelberg. pp. 175-196.

Levinson, David (2008). Density and dispersion: the co-development of land use and rail in London. Journal of Economic Geography, Vol. 8, 55-77.

Milakis, D., van Arem, B., van Wee, B. (2017). Policy and society related implications of automated driving: a review of literature and directions for future research. In: Journal of Intelligent Transportation Systems, 21(4), 324-348.

Moreno, A. T. (2017). Autonomous vehicles: implications on an integrated land-use and transport modelling suite. Paper presented at the 11th AESOP Young Academics Conference in Munich, 10 – 13 April 2017.

Wachenfeld, W., Winner, H., Gerdes, C., Lenz, B., Maurer, M., Beiker, S. A., Fraedrich, E., Winkle, T. (2015): Use-Cases des autonomen Fahrens. In: Maurer, M., Gerdes J. C., Lenz, B., Winner, H. (Ed.): Autonomes Fahren. Technische, rechtliche und gesellschaftliche Aspekte. Springer. Heidelberg. pp. 9-37.

Wegener, M. (2009). Modelle der räumlichen Stadtentwicklung – alte und neue Herausforderungen. Presentation on the 10. Aachener Kolloquium Mobilität und Stadt “Ein Blick zurück – ein Blick voraus” RWTH Aachen, 17th – 18th September 2009. Stadt Region Land 87, 73-81.