The CEO of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), Heather Thompson, highlighted the actions that the Colombian capital has taken to promote cleaner mobility, making it a worthy recipient second-time recipient of the Sustainable Transport Award.
The Institute highlighted Bogotá's timely response to the need to decongest public transportation and prevent the spread of Covid-19, opening 84 kilometers of temporary bicycle lanes that functioned as mirror corridors to the TransMilenio trunk lines and which allowed citizens to move around in a biosecure manner.
With this measure, daily bicycle trips made up 10% of the total daily trips made in Bogotá during that season, thus consolidating the redistribution of public space for those who need it most.
She also highlighted the decision of the District Administration to include electric vehicles in the city's Public Transportation System. To date, 483 electric buses of the planned fleet of 1485 have been rolled out.
In terms of private transportation, the ITDP highlights the exemption of the Pico y Placa measure (a driving restriction policy aimed to mitigating traffic congestion) for carpoolers with three or more occupants, a program that has led to an average of 110 thousand registrations per week, representing 2.5 million carpool trips per month.
With the 2018 creation of the District Road Safety Plan of the Speed Management program, in May 2020, Bogota became the first city in Colombia to implement a maximum speed limit, going from 60 km/h to 50 km/h, a measure that is not only part of the principles of the Visión Cero (“Zero Vision”) policy, but also responds to World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations for urban environments.
In 2021, there was an 11% reduction in traffic fatalities and 37 lives saved as a result of the Speed Management program. These reductions are compared to the average number of fatalities in the years 2015 to 2017, periods when there were no roads with the 50km/h speed limit.
Ms Thompson also recognized the work done to benefit children and adolescents who are part of the Al Colegio en Bici and Ciempié projects, which involve guided caravans every day so that students can safely go to school by bike or on foot. By 2022, the projects will double their coverage with respect to the previous year, in order to reach 12,000 beneficiaries.
The Transportation and Development Policy Institute is a global non-profit organization that works with cities around the world to design and implement high-quality transportation systems and policy solutions that make cities more livable, equitable, and sustainable. Its Sustainable Transportation Awards program recognizes cities that implement innovative sustainable transportation projects.