4. O/D matrix for goods and actions to be implemented

Confindustria Piemonte // Comitato Transpadana // Comité pour la Transalpine // IPRA

Activity N°4, identifying the Origin/Destination matrix for goods and actions to be implemented for developing intermodality, is materialized by carrying out a survey amongst the main transport operators (rail, road, infrastructure administrators, hauliers, logistics experts). It concerns knowing operators' practices in terms of transport and their opinions on the present and future situation, and understanding the requirements, ideas and conditions needed for a modal shift from road transport to alternative solutions, whilst taking account of the different economic and organisational constraints at the same time. The enquiry contains two objectives:


  • Identifying concrete actions liable to contribute to developing intermodality at short term
  • Succeeding in defining the O/D matrix for goods in the zone concerned by cross-border train links


Interviewing a representative share of logistics operators and manufacturers, French and Italian, was carried out a survey to understand the needs, ideas and proposals with regard to infrastructure priorities, organizational and economic.

Using a questionnaire, also validated by focus groups, the main suggestions were collected and calibrated the objectives of the project. Identified a total of 171 operators, classified into 6 categories according to the type of activity, the answers were developed, encompassing both quantitative data (flows, relations concerned, product categories represented, modal split and used intermodal centers, railway crossings involved) and qualitative data, such as the conditions and suggested actions.

Regarding goods and flows, the analysis carried out made ​​it possible to identify the main traffic routes affecting the area of study, assessing the direction, the type of goods being transported, the transportation mode selected, in addition to the number of rail crossings interested by trade: the results confirm that the combined intermodal, such as integration with the railway road mode, is in the logistics sector a necessary choice and at the same time an opportunity. In fact, among the responses, a large percentage (46%) is from manufacturing companies, carrying on the road, and that would be available to switch to alternative modes at the same cost and service level.

The investigations have also highlighted the need to develop intermodal transport system through a more "rational" intermodal logistics centers or nodes: the results show a large proportion of logistics centers, but few true intermodal nodes, confirming a territorial dispersion testifying at the same time, an orientation to foster conditions of opportunity and perhaps proximity to customers, rather than the use of infrastructure and centralized services, better connected with railway sidings.

Critical aspects, therefore, are not lacking: the poor quality of service offered by the railways, transit times too long, non-reliability of the transit times, the absence of combined services and ferroutage on the relations of interest are the main stumbling that obstructs today the development of intermodality. But the same problems show large margins of intervention, which pass through the enhancement of the elements of technological innovation, and organizational infrastructure that, if pursued, would facilitate the movement of transport choices from road to rail.