Hyperconnected City Logistics: Capillary Network Design and Management

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Faugere, Louis Valentin Reginald
Montreuil, Benoit
White, Chelsea C., III
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In hyperconnected city logistics, this dissertation focuses on capillary networks which enable first-and-last mile logistics and fulfillment activities and customer interfaces with logistics systems. Capillary logistics networks are central to several innovations aiming to enable fast and convenient service to consumers while reducing cost and negative externalities associated with logistics activities in urban environments under the pressure of e-commerce growth. In this dissertation, we examine two types of urban capillary logistics networks: smart locker bank networks and access hub networks. Smart locker banks enable the aggregation of customer locations into a network of unattended pickup-and-delivery points. Access hubs serve as consolidation and transshipment points for logistics service providers at the neighborhood level. Our objective is to provide a set of methods to design and manage capillary networks and identify key managerial insights to shape urban logistics. In doing so, we leverage concepts of the Physical Internet to examine modularity, hyperconnectivity and mobility solutions for smart locker bank and access hub networks. This work was shaped and supported by a research initiative entitled Data-Driven Design and Operation of Hyperconnected Intra-City Logistics Service Networks in collaboration with SF Express, a large parcel express carrier in China.
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