This article first appeared in the Railway-News Magazine Issue 1 2022.
The pandemic has radically changed the way we live and as we near the two-year anniversary of the first UK lockdown, it is a natural time to take stock and reflect on how life has changed, and the role that the rail industry will play now and in the future.
In no greater way can these significant changes be seen than in the way we currently use the UK rail network in 2022. With more of us working remotely or using a hybrid working model, the network is adapting to changes in the way that we live, work and travel on a near daily basis.
So where does that leave the role of the UK network? With a reduction in passenger numbers, how can operators seize the opportunities presented by the pandemic and adapt to the way we live, work and travel today?
The need for fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) to be delivered efficiently and quickly has never been more essential elsewhere across the country to achieve a better work-life balance. However, when countered with the need for greener, sustainable means of receiving our goods, there can only be one answer – freight.
Freight transport is undoubtedly the greenest and most environmentally friendly means of transporting goods across the country. According to the Rail Delivery Group’s “Levelling Up Britain” report, each tonne of freight transported by rail produces over three quarters (76%) less carbon emissions compared to road, and rail freight cuts Britain’s carbon footprint by preventing 7 million HGV journeys per year. It is a rapidly evolving market, with the value of a rail freight path now estimated to cost £1.5 million each year.
Whilst it is positive to see the increased opportunities for the freight market, there are complexities around how paths can be opened to accommodate this growth and how to effectively balance the needs of both freight and passenger operators.
Here at 3Squared, we passionately believe that technology has the power to solve the key challenges and complex issues that the industry faces. With that in mind, and to prepare for the future growth of freight, we have developed PathPlanner, a tool which aims to resolve these problems and more.
PathPlanner aims to assist freight and passenger train operators to better manage their very short-term planning (VSTP). As it stands, VSTP currently operates under control conditions – i.e., additional trains that are needed are entered manually into operational systems by control staff.
PathPlanner has been designed with freight operators in mind, as it finds grey space in the timetable to add previously validated schedules at short notice, therefore maximising freight movement, productivity, and asset optimisation, whilst improving fuel efficiencies and reducing idling. From a passenger operations point of view, the system can help manage VSTP during periods of disruption, cancelling and adding schedules seamlessly, in turn increasing productivity and asset optimisation.
Railway-News magazine Issue 1, February 2023: 3Squared - Driving the Rail Industry Forward through Innovation.
3Squared discusses the risks of rail fatigue, what causes it and the effects it can have on the transport ecosystem.
3Squared has announced that EPM Transport Solutions, Omnibus Solutions, 3Squared, and FabDigital has rebranded to Velociti Group.
EPM Transport Solutions has acquired FabDigital, further driving digital transformation & enhanced communications in the UK rail industry
3Squared summarises the top headlines in the rail industry this year, covering infrastructure, technology, wellbeing and sustainability.
3Squared recently attended Railtex – the UK’s International rail industry exhibition event at the NEC in Birmingham.
For World Day for Safety and Health at Work 2023, 3Squared want to investigate what technology can do to support the safety of its industry.
This year 3Squared is getting involved in The Big Rail Diversity Challenge and Women in Rail events, championing EDI in the rail industry.
3Squared is looking forward to joining fellow members at this year’s Spring Group Meeting and BBQ, with Rail Freight Group (RFG).
3Squared will be exhibiting its latest solutions on Stand 8052 at Multimodal 2023, 13th-15th June at the NEC Birmingham.
3Squared is delighted to join Rail Forum and five other Rail Forum members at this year’s Railtex, 9th – 11th May at the NEC Birmingham.
3Squared's guest article on Rail Freight Group’s website discusses the potential for growth in the rail freight industry in 2023.
3Squared discusses the impact of digital connectivity in the city of Sheffield, shifting digital trends and more.
3Squared will be joining rail industry leaders and suppliers at TransCityRail on 9th February 2023 in the Midlands.
Rail software and solutions specialist 3Squared has appointed Martine Dodwell-Bennett as it's new Divisional Director.
3Squared has secured funding from the DfT and Innovate UK’s ‘First of a Kind’ (FOAK) competition to further develop its PathPlanner tool.
Graham Cooper, Head of Product & Marketing at 3Squared, gives an insight into connections he has made since joining the rail industry.
An interview with Martin Gleadow, Solution Architect of 3Squared, on his thoughts about the upcoming Rail Live 2022 event.
Earlier this month, a Mayoral Breakfast was held to promote Doncaster's bid to become the new home of Great British Railways HQ.
The RIA Innovation Conference 2022 was held in Nottingham, with the rail industry coming out in force for the hotly anticipated event.
EPM Transport Solutions announces David Brown has joined the Board as a Non-Executive Director, bringing with him 40 years of experience.
3Squared has been selected for the Department for Transport’s (DfT) 2021 Transport Research Innovation Grants (TRIG) Programme.
3Squared were honoured to be visited by Andrew Stephenson MP, to find out more about how the business is giving back to the local community.
3Squared's Martin Gleadow joins Director General of the Rail Freight Group, Maggie Simpson, on the latest RSSB podcast.
After the long-awaited Integrated Rail Plan was released, 3Squared explain how the changes will impact the future of rail in the north.
3Squared announce details of their exclusive in-person event, Creating a Culture for Innovation, with Rail Innovation Group and Porterbrook.
EPM Group has completed the acquisition of one of the UK’s leading transport software businesses, 3Squared Ltd.
On Wednesday 29th September, 3Squared will be showcasing its flagship suite of RailSmart products at Virtual 'Great British RailSmart Day'.
Claire Booth joins rail technology consultancy 3Squared as Head of Client Support to build on the success of its client support department.
It’s crucial the rail industry plugs the widening STEM learning skills gap if it is to meet the transportation needs of the future.
3Squared named as joint winners of the Railway Industry Association’s (RIA) SME Growth Award alongside fellow nominee Motion Rail.
Digital technologies: 3Squared are at the forefront of delivering innovative products as we move towards a digital railway.
3Squared, with RPD Inspire, are to provide ETCS digital solutions for driver training on East Coast Digital Programme (ECDP).
At a time where the rail industry is rapidly changing, supporting the growth of STEM skills has never been more crucial.
Digital technology consultancy 3Squared has signed a 3-year deal to supply its RailSmart Competency Management Solution to Network Rail.
The consortium’s dynamic train planning solution will save freight operators time and resource in validating VSTPs based on historic data.
Use the form opposite to get in touch with 3Squared directly to discuss any requirements you might have.