Plan de Movilidad Sustentable

The municipal government of Buenos Aires has developed and begun to implement a comprehensive plan to foster healthy and sustainable mobility options for the city’s residents. From their website:

“We’re working to improve your quality of life. To accomplish this with the Sustainable Mobility Plan, we seek to reorder transit so that all of us can travel in a rapid, safe, and orderly manner in our city, contributing additionally to improved environmental quality. The Sustainable Mobility Plan integrates linked programs which were developed by using the global best practices, the support of recognized professionals in each field of expertise, and the mainstays of managing transportation and public transit: public transit priority, healthy mobility, and roadway safety and design.”

These three pillars have a number of supporting programs that are being implemented successfully:

Public transit priority

  • Preferential lanes – counterflow lanes used exclusively by buses and taxis during rush hours have been introduced on many of Buenos Aires’ main arteries, including Santa Fe, Pueyrredon, and Callao.
  • Metrobus – the city’s first BRT corridor opened at the end of May
  • New Metro stations – fifteen new stations are in planning or construction along four Subte lines

Healthy mobility

  • Ecological buses – hybrid buses are being introduced to reduce emissions
  • Pedestrian priority – restricting auto access to pedestrian corridors to encourage walking
  • Buenos Aires Better on Bike – the city has introduced a bike sharing program and is ambitiously expanding its network of bicycle lanes. Additionally, bike-friendly policies are in place for public transit. Daniel Chain, the city’s minister for urban development, credits these advances with fostering geometric growth of bicycle use over the past months

Roadway safety and design

  • Traffic safety and enforcement – This multipronged effort includes improved DUI enforcement, speeding crackdowns, and improvements to scholar transport.
  • Efficient parking systems
  • Intelligent transportation systems (ITS) implementation
  • Infrastructure improvements

The city is doing an impressive job of articulating a comprehensive vision of sustainable mobility, even though progress in making such significant changes can seem to be slow (see the above video – it features porteños praising a mobility improvement and suggesting a change in a different area, only for the video to then show that the suggested change is in fact underway). Working with strong allies like ITDP, Transeunte Argentina, and the Society of Architects is helping to turn this vision into reality.

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