Sustainable urban mobility and commuting in Baltic cities

October 2017 -
March 2021


Horizontal action:
3. Transport 3.5 Urban mobility


People living in the suburbs usually commute into the city centre by car. Offering an alternative combination of various transport modes, including bike and car sharing, is a way for cities to achieve a more sustainable, environmental friendly commuting system. The project helps urban and transport planners assess, plan, and integrate alternative mobility options into transport plans and policies of cities and municipalities.


Sustainable and green commuting

As more and more people live in the suburbs, there is an increasing number of commuters to city centres. The commuter traffic is mostly dominated by the use of private cars, which causes traffic congestion, air pollution, scarcity of parking spaces and a decrease in the cost-recovery contribution of public transport. The SUMBA project works towards a more sustainable and environmentally friendly commuting system combining various transport modes, such as public transport, car sharing, walking and cycling.

Pilot regions

The project helps urban and transport planners assess, plan and integrate alternative mobility options into the transport plans and policies of their cities and municipalities. Tools and guidance documents facilitating the realisation of this objective are first tested in ten pilot regions from seven countries: Hamburg (Germany); Tallinn city/Harju county and Tartu (Estonia); Riga (Latvia); Växjö (Sweden); Siauliai (Lithuania); Helsinki (Finland); Olsztyn, Gdynia and Warsaw suburban region (Poland). Commuting master plans are afterwards developed in those regions.

Low carbon cities and regions

The challenges caused by commuter traffic is a common issue for the Baltic Sea region. This is why SUMBA aims at disseminating tools and guidance documents developed in the project in the entire region. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is an important step towards turning the Baltic Sea region into a low-carbon region.

Highlights by mid-term:

SUMBA partner cities Hamburg-Altona (Germany), Olsztyn (Poland), Riga (Latvia), Siauliai (Lithuania), Tallinn (Estonia) and Växjö (Sweden) have analysed the strengths and weaknesses as well as the opportunities and risks of their respective transport systems. Different approaches were chosen for this purpose, with the majority of cities holding workshops with relevant stakeholders. The findings were classified and prioritised according to their significance. These were supplemented by the analyses of parameters influencing the transport system, such as population, settlement and economic structure.

On 4-5 December 2018 in Tallinn (Estonia), more than 70 participants took part in the SUMBA conference on transport modelling and data management. The conference included sessions focused on data sources, data collection methods and open source modelling tools as well as sessions about building transport models for cities and practical examples.


€ 3.14
€ 2.53
Eni + Russia
€ 0.00
€ 0.00



Project manager

District Office Altona, Hamburg (FHH)

Flavia Suter

+49 40 428 116 110

Legal representative

City of Hamburg, Borough of Altona

Johannes Gerdelmann

+49 40 428 116 000

Financial manager

Baltic Environmental Forum Deutschland

Matthias Grätz

494 053 307 076

Communication manager

Baltic Environmental Forum Estonia

Triin Sakermaa

+372 6597 028