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SUS 8400B Urban Freight and City Logistics

Sustainability in the Urban Environment

SUS 8400B Urban Freight and City Logistics

Spring 2019. Subject to refinement/updating.


Instructor: Dr. Alison Conway
Schedule: Tuesdays, Thursdays 5:00 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.
Location: Shepherd Hall, Room 22
3 credits 3 hours/week


Dr. Alison Conway
Office: Steinman Hall (ST) T-195
Office Hours: Wednesdays 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM, or by appointment.
Please note, I check class emails Monday through Friday. If I do not respond to your email within 24 hours on these days, please resend a polite reminder, as messages do occasionally get lost in my inbox. Emails sent over the weekend or on holidays will receive a response on the next working day.


City Logistics involves the means over which freight distribution can take place in urban areas as well as the strategies that can improve its overall efficiency while mitigating congestion and environmental externalities. It includes the provision of services contributing to efficiently managing the movements of goods in cities and providing innovative responses to customer demands. City logistics has received a growing level of attention in light of urbanization throughout the world, rising standards of living, globalization, and new forms of consumption such as e-commerce.


This graduate course introduces the core concepts, challenges and methods of city logistics. It has three main objectives:

1) The student will be exposed to the combination of two realms of enquiry defining city logistics that have rarely been jointly considered; urban studies and freight transportation.
2) The student will be introduced to the main components of an urban freight transport system and its primary stakeholders.
3) The student will have the opportunity to learn several dimensions of what the practice of city logistics implies.


There is no required textbook for this course. Required reading materials will be available electronically via Dropbox.

Course Requirements

Homework Homeworks will be assigned and collected throughout the semester. Homeworks will include discussion questions (module 1); problem sets (module 2); and case study summaries (module 3). Homework will constitute 15% of your final grade.

Exams There will be a mid-term exam and a cumulative final exam. Exams will be conducted in the classroom and will be open book/open notes. If needed, calculators may be used during exams; however, no cell phones, tablets, computers, iPods or other electronic devices may be used. The midterm exam will constitute 20% of your final grade; the final exam will determine 30% of your final grade.

Project Each student will complete a project examining and evaluating a specific city logistics implementation. The student will be required to submit a written report and to complete an in-class presentation detailing findings. Together, the written report and presentation will constitute 25% of your final grade.

Each group will be expected to submit a final report and to present a 12-15 minute presentation in class. Presentations should be submitted by email to in Powerpoint or PDF format no later than 5:00 pm on May 9th. Reports and presentations should be uniformly formatted and checked for spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Presentations should also be checked for readability.

The information in both the report and presentation should be organized as follows:

1. Title page
2. Table of contents
3. Introduction
4. Report Body (including figures and tables)
5. Recommendations
6. References (including data sources)
7. (Optional) Appendices (e.g. raw data, calculations)

Data Sources:

The following are recommended data sources to characterize these conditions:

• General:
• Population:
• Land Use:
• Employment Characteristics:
• Street Network: or maps/open-data/ (GIS)
• Parking Regulations: or
• Truck Routes:
• Bicycles: and
• Transit:
[Please note: these links are not guaranteed to work. Any missing links should be reported to the professor.]

Class Participation Students are expected to complete class readings, attend classroom meetings, and actively participate in classroom activities and discussions. Class participation will determine 10% of your final grade.

Student Progress If you are struggling with concepts delivered in class or through the online resources, or if you are concerned about your grades, please do not hesitate to contact the instructor ASAP by email or during office hours. Extra credit assignments will not be offered to students individually. NO grade changes will be made after completion of the final exam.

Electronic Devices Cell phones should be kept in your bag and on silent in the classroom. Use of cell phones for any purpose during class is not permitted. The instructor reserves the right to ask any student violating this policy to leave the classroom (which will result in an unexcused absence for the day). Having a cell phone out during a quiz or exam will result in a grade of ZERO for that assignment. Laptops and tablets may be used only for the purpose of taking notes. If a student is found to be using an electronic device for another purpose, then the above cell phone policies will apply to that electronic device. CE Departmental policy regarding use of electronic devices during exams can be found at:

Academic Integrity Students are expected to maintain academic integrity at all times, as detailed in the CUNY Academic Integrity Policy. As stated in the policy, academic sanctions for academic integrity violations are determined at the discretion of the instructor. The following are the academic sanctions that will be applied in this course, with NO exceptions.

  • Students are encouraged to work together on projects and homework assignments unless explicitly stated in the assignment. However, each student should hand in original written work. Problem sets and written assignments copied from other students will not be graded and will be counted as a missing assignment.
  • Copying from an electronic device or from another student during an exam is strictly prohibited [abridged].
  • Copying information from books or online resources without proper citation is plagiarism. Written assignments will be submitted through Blackboard’s SafeAssign System and will be individually evaluated by the instructor. Assignments found to contain plagiarized material will receive a grade of ZERO. Instances of plagiarism will also be reported to the CCNY Academic Integrity Officer for potential disciplinary sanctions.
  • Repeated instances of cheating or plagiarism of any kind will result in an automatic F for the course.

Course Outline

1 Intro to urban freight and city logistics
2 Urban planning and freight stakeholders
3 Urban economics
4 Supply chain management
5 Warehousing and distribution
6 Urban freight externalities and regulations
7 MIDTERM/Intro to freight data and surveying methods
8 Freight modeling and forecasting
9 Planning and designing for urban freight - Street Networks
10 Planning and designing for urban freight - Parking and Loading
11 Spring Break
12 Case Studies I
13 Case Studies II
14 Project Presentations/FINAL EXAM