The efficient management of park and ride facilities can provide an excellent opportunity to reduce traffic congestion and effectively improve the increasing mobility of people entering and leaving the urban environment of Barcelona and adjacent municipalities, thereby reducing congestion and harmful effects on the environment. As current data shows that the maximum number of interurban journeys by private vehicle has continued to grow in recent years and that the average distance travelled per journey is also on the rise, offering the possibility of private vehicle parking in a convenient network of park and ride facilities could have a significant impact on reducing congestion and its direct effects on pollution.
Mobility in the Barcelona metropolitan area and in Catalonia as a whole is becoming more complex, with greater distances being travelled and an increase in intermodality. This, combined with rising traffic congestion, means that private vehicle - rail transport interchanges are being used more and more, along with the associated park and ride facilities.
Therefore, the general objective of the Pla Director Urbanístic (Urban Master Plan, or PDU) is to create an adequate urban and territorial framework to exploit the potential of park and ride, as outlined in the 2011-2020 Pla Director d’Infraestructures (Master Plan for Infrastructures, or PDI) for public transport in the Barcelona metropolitan area, which can be found at suburban railway stations – RENFE-ADIF and Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de Catalunya (FGC) – and at some bus stations, as a response to the growing demand for this type of parking facility.