Civitas PORTIS

Cleaner and Better Transport in Cities

CIVITAS (which stands for Cities, VITAlity and Sustainability) is a network of cities dedicated to cleaner, better transport in Europe and beyond.


Civitas PORTIS was a four year project that will tested innovative and sustainable urban mobility solutions in five European port cities; Aberdeen, Antwerp, Trieste, Constanta and Klaipeda. Ningbo, in China, was also involved as a follower city.

The project was 100% funded by the European Commission from the Horizon 2020 Funding Programme and the total budget for the local region is approximately £3.2 million.

Overall the project aimed to show that sustainable urban mobility can increase functional and social cohesion between city centres and ports, while pushing the economy forward and boosting the allure of modern urban environments.

Locally, the project was led by Aberdeen City Council but also involves Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen Harbour Board, Aberdeenshire Council and Nestrans. The University of Aberdeen undertook an assessment of the project.

Nestrans was involved in the following Work Packages relating to:

  • Fostering walking and cycling;
  • Redesigning collective travel;
  • Developing travel plans;
  • Collecting and managing data to support Travel Information;
  • Supporting sound planning and decision-making;
  • Enhancing demand management; and
  • Developing smart systems for freight.
    PORTIS Map graphic

    More about PORTIS

    What are the specific challenges facing mobility in port cities?

    How can we ensure that ports and city centres work together effectively to create cities with more sustainable mobility and better quality of life for their citizens?

    Read more about the entire Civitas PORTIS project :

    Download Civitas PORTIS Brochure

    Workplace Travel Planning Programme

    This project aimed to establish the problems, issues, barriers and opportunities surrounding a modal shift away from single occupancy car use. The programme was a result of a desire to expand on travel planning work already being undertaken in Aberdeen to include employers in the North Dee as well as the South Dee areas of Altens, East Tullos, and West Tullos. By widening the geographic area travel planning work, it is hoped that a network can be established which will enable more collaborative working across the city.

    The final reports on the project are linked below:

    You can also view the new travel planning leaflets for Altens, Tullos, and the North Dee area that we developed as part of the project.

    As part of our response to the Covid-19 pandemic. We produced  Short to Medium Term Guidance.

    As part of the Civitas Portis project we have produced some Medium to long term (post Covid-19) travel planning guidance.

    Travel Planning Webinar

    Our Transport Executive for Travel Planning & Delivery, Kelly Wiltshire, presented feedback on the project in the first of a series of CIVITAS Portis Webinars.

    Cargo vessel loading freight


    Nestrans was the lead partner on the following Work Packages:

    • Enhancing freight gateway interconnectivity; and
    • Minimising large vehicles in City Centre and encouraging clean vehicles.

    Keep up to date with the Freight project updates.

    Example of an e-Cargo bike

    E-Cargo Bikes

    Related to the freight elements of our Civitas Portis work is the Nestrans E-Cargo Bike scheme.

    Organisations across the north east can apply for a free trial of an e-cargo bike for a period of up to one year. The trials will allow organisations to test a means of transport which will contribute to improved air quality and reduced congestion. This project complements the forthcoming introduction of a Low Emission Zone (LEZ) in the city centre.

    An Ultra low emission strategy has also been prepared as part of the Civitas Portis project for the region.