Many cities are switching from auto-centric to bus and bike-share transport, with dramatic effect. Mexico City was recognized for making an impressive advance in the past year.
"Sustainable transport systems go hand in hand with low emissions development and livable cities,"...
Bicycles, pedestrian-friendly plazas and walkways, new bus lines, and parking meters are combining to transform parts of Mexico City from a traffic nightmare to a commuter's paradise.
As recently as late 2011, Mexico City commuters reported enduring the most painful commute among respondents to an IBM survey. Based on factors such as roadway traffic, stress levels, and commute times, the city scored worse than 19 cities, including Beijing, China, and Nairobi, Kenya. Mexico City has seen its roadways swell beyond capacity to more than four million vehicles, which are owned, increasingly, by a growing middle class.
But the city has also made strides to reorient itself around public spaces and people, rather than cars and driving.
Since 2011, Mexico City has added two new bus corridors to its Metrobus system, connecting the narrow streets in the historic center to the airport and making it the longest bus rapid transit (BRT) system in Latin America. The city also added nearly 90 stations and 1,200 new bicycles to the Ecobici bike-sharing program, began to reform on-street parking, improved sidewalks, and established new walkways. Cars were removed entirely from some narrow streets to make room for free flow of buses and pedestrians, and marketplaces were established for street vendors to help unclog the corridors.