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DHL has introduced a high-speed intermodal parcel delivery system in London using a riverboat combined with bikes for last mile delivery.

The new system aims to ease congestion and provide a reliable and efficient way of transporting deliveries across the capital. The service has been introduced as part of DHL’s commitment to using blended transport modes to improve access to urban areas and is a step towards exploring the use of the river for small scale freight transport.

“This year we will invest about 1 billion EUR in our infrastructure for growing our global network”, says John Pearson, CEO of DHL Express. “The riverboat is a fast, efficient and reliable way of utilizing a currently untapped access route into London and it is one of a couple of initiatives we are investing in, on our way to zero-emission in 2050.”

The riverboat service, operated by Thames Clippers Logistics, will run daily at 7:30 am, transporting packages into the centre of London. The shipments will be loaded from electric vehicles onto the riverboat at Wandsworth Riverside Quarter Pier before travelling at high speed along the Thames into central London, docking at Bankside Pier for final mile delivery on DHL courier bicycles.

The effectiveness of combining land and waterways has been proved successful in Amsterdam and Venice, but the service in London is DHL’s first high-speed service.

The riverboat service is the latest addition to GoGreen, DHL’s group-wide environmental protection program. GoGreen is the cornerstone of DHL’s sustainability work and focuses on reducing and avoiding emissions of greenhouse gases and local air pollutants. Within this is Mission 2050, targeting a reduction of all logistics-related emissions to zero by the year 2050

Photo credit @ DHL


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