Logo: EffizienzCluster - LogistikRuhr

Urban Retail Logistics - Into the City Together

Overloaded infrastructures, restrictions for inner city traffic and more and more individual customer wishes mean urban logistics has to face up to a lot of new challenges. Innovative concepts are needed to deal with the more detailed distribution situations within cities and city centers where competitors are now becoming cooperation partners.

Today’s consumers want to have shopping facilities very close by, to have more opportunities for placing orders via the internet and on mobile phones and they also want this to be combined with flexible delivery times. This changing situation means that existing city logistics concepts cannot quite keep up today. Legal restrictions such as environment zones or access restrictions are making it more and more difficult to organize deliveries in conurbations effectively. Small delivery quantities are pushing up the number of trips vehicles must make and costs are rising rapidly as a result. That is why we need new approaches to bundling goods flows which also make it possible to provide more individual service for consumers.

Objectives of the project

The key aim of this is to enhance and improve local distribution within cities: trade logistics must be adapted to the conditions and the consumer behavior prevalent in conurbations. Redesigning these urban delivery structures is based on a multi-retailer approach where competitors form cooperative logistics structures together where competitors work together to achieve more effective bundling of goods flows. To achieve this, logistics infrastructures and interfaces between long distance transportation and local distribution have to be developed in more detail and undergo basic redesign. Urban Hubs are to act as central bundling sites to enable logistics processing for highly individualized goods flows. An additional focus for the project is on reducing urban goods and service traffic in order to decrease CO2 emissions and noise pollution.

Specific Innovations

A large number of individual processes has to be coordinated in the Urban Hub. The intelligence this requires can be provided by modern AutoID and smart IT technology: an Urban Information system can then quickly bundle the information flows needed and ensure the service and goods flows are interconnected within the network. Known as “Tante Emma 2.0” or “Corner Shop 2.0”, this project takes up innovative retail concepts and develops suitable delivery services. As a multichannel concept the “Corner Shop 2.0” combines internet orders with in-store assortments. In this way retail companies which provide a limited range of goods locally but would also like to complement this with a larger “virtual” range can be provided with the best possible logistics services.

Partners in the Project

Capgemini Deutschland Holding GmbH


DOEGO Fruchthandel und Import eG


Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML


GS1 Germany GmbH


Landgard Blumen und Pflanzen GmbH


Lekkerland GmbH & Co. KG


Metro AG


REWE-Zentralfinanz eG

Competitors can cooperate by bundling goods flows in an “Urban Hub” so as to optimize local distribution and deliveries within cities.

Contact person

Dipl.-Betrw. Christiane Auffermann MBA


Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics IML

Phone: +49 (0) 231 97 43 309


Facts & Figures

Start of the Project


Project Duration
43 months

Project Volume
2,9 Mio Euro

Press Center


Learn more about CPS!

Members of EffizienzCluster

EffizienzCluster Management GmbH
Kölner Str. 80 - 82
45481 Mülheim an der Ruhr

Tel.: 0208-9925 - 255
Fax: 0208-9925 - 222
E-Mail: info@effizienzcluster.de