ACTIVITY 11.1: Monitor progress and adapt


By Tom Wood / Updated: 28 Nov 2019


The broader monitoringinfo-icon and evaluationinfo-icon arrangements have been defined and the datainfo-icon collection has been conducted before the Sustainable Urban Mobility Planinfo-icon is adopted (see Activities 3.1, 6.1 and 7.3). With the implementation of the actions it is time to apply the selected monitoring tools regularly and to check how much progress has been made towards achieving the targets. Through regular monitoring and reflection, problems can be identified early and adaptations can be made. Which kind of adaptation to apply depends on the specific situation and local context of every city and its SUMP. Flexibility is needed during the SUMP process to guarantee that new developments and insights are taken into account. New and better measures or actions might be available that could address a specific challenge of the city or new knowledge could make a measureinfo-icon obsolete. Reasons to adapt measure implementation could include internal factors relating to planning (e.g. time or budget), or various kinds of external factors (e.g. public disagreement with an action, political legislature, regulation processes or planning activities that may influence the process, new technologies etc).



  • Identify problems, bottlenecks and other challenges for on-time implementation.

  • Keep track of progress towards achieving the targets.

  • Adapt to new technological, legal, funding or political developments.

  • Adapt and optimise the implementation process.



  • Keep track of implementation activities through regular personal contact with the action managers (see Activity 12.1).

  • Regularly measure your indicators with the data collection methods and frequency defined in Activity 7.3. Use the measure-level indicators to monitor progress of individual measures or measure packages towards their targets (every 1-5 years, depending on the type of measures). Use the strategic indicators to monitor progress towards your general SUMP targets (usually every 1-2 years). In both cases, compare measurements to the baselineinfo-icon values before the start of implementation - while also considering other contributing factors - to estimate the impact of your measures.

  • Keep abreast of new developments, such as changes in national regulations, technologies, funding or local politicsinfo-icon. Regularly think about what current trends mean for your activities.

  • Be flexible about updating your measures and making changes to implementation activities. You may need to adapt them due to:

    • Difficulties in implementation activities. If, for example, a measure encounters strong opposition, consider turning it into a temporary experiment that will be properly evaluated after a certain amount of time (e.g. one year), and then keep or discontinue it depending on the results. Often, opposition decreases once people get used to the change and see the benefits (such as in the case of road pricing in Stockholm).

    • Measures or the entire SUMP under-achieving important targets. If individual measures of the entire set of SUMP measures turn out to be less effective as assumed, investigate the reasons and adjust in time. If, for example, new protected bicycle lanes do not get used as much as aimed for, find out if something is wrong with them or if important connections leading to them are missing and react accordingly. If air pollution in your city is stagnating despite your efforts, for example because economic growth enables more and more people to own a car, consider reinforcing or adding air quality measures, such as higher parking fees or road pricing in combination with providing modern electric busses.

    • Technological, legal or political developments that render your measures out of date or make other, more effective measures possible. New types of electric vehicles, for example, might require a redesign of planned infrastructure, or local elections might make measures to redistribute road space possible that would not have found a majority before.

  • Adapt wherever necessary in cooperation with action managers. Be brave to stop a measure if it does not work! The implementation programme should be modified throughout the implementation period, based on monitoring results.

  • Clearly state the changes to SUMP measures that result from the monitoring process and get formal approval for the most important changes at the political level.


Activities beyond essential requirements

  • Include a ‘sanity check’ in implementation monitoring, meaning that stakeholders, the public and possible peers from other cities provide feedback on how the implementation performs compared to the objectives and targets of the SUMP.

  • Have the monitoring and evaluation carried out in a transparent way, preferably by an independent agency to guarantee neutrality, and applying the same indicatorinfo-icon set that was used throughout the previous steps. If this seems unrealistic (e.g. due to budget restraints), a self-monitoring and evaluation by authorities is a valid alternative.

  • Disseminate your evaluation results, especially those of novel measures, so that others can learn from your experience (see Activity 12.2).


Timing and coordination

  • Parallel process during implementation phase.



✔ Status of implementation activities constantly monitored.
✔ Progress towards measure targets and strategic SUMP targets evaluated at regular intervals.
✔ Necessary adjustments in implementation of measures identified.
✔ Adjustments discussed and agreed with relevant actors.

More info: 


Yearly monitoring reports summarising the status of target attainment


The city of Lund monitors the actions of their SUMP closely and evaluates them against the targets set by the politicians in the planning process. The number of pedestrians, the use of bicycles, motor vehicles and public transport are therefore measured annually. A survey among citizens collects information on attitudes and mobility behaviour every 4th year. When the targets are not met, the actions are intensified or changes are proposed for the following year.

To visualize and communicate the results of the monitoring process, Lund uses a “traffic light” system: if actions are proceeding well and reach the targets (green), if they need adjustment (yellow) or if they need to be re-planned/ changed/ replaced (red).


Author: Anders Söderberg, City of Lund, collected by UBC


Interactive monitoring platform for SUMP


San Sebastian uses a mobility monitoring platform to track the progress of SUMP measures. The digital tool is based on data provided by existing data collection systems, obtaining very precise and reliable estimations. Managers and decision makers can get an easy overview of the general status, while the application also allows them to go into more detail if they are interested. Progress is visualised in a simple form using traffic light colours to show whether or not the city is on track towards achieving the objectives of the SUMP, or even other municipal strategies, in the respective area.


Author: Municipality of Donostia/San Sebastian, collected by UBC


Systematic measure monitoring to increase acceptance


The monitoring process for pedestrianisation-related measures included a territorial assessment focused on accessibility to identify the areas that could benefit from improving conditions for walking. In addition, traffic counts were analysed to identify traffic flows and to estimate air pollutant emissions. A questionnaire was also circulated to further assess the acceptance of the measures as well as their potential impact. The assessment and measurement of implemented measures were necessary to adopt corrective measures. The strategy proved to be successful in showing the benefits of the measures and increasing acceptance. It is therefore recommended to be used in other sites that could benefit from pedestrianisation measures.


Author: Jose Augusto Batista Vieira, Câmara Municipal do Funchal, collected by Polis