Johannesburg Goes Car-Free!

In a recent post we highlighted the achievement of Suwon in staging the inaugural EcoMobility World Festival. In this festival, the residents of a neighborhood in a large city act out a cleaner, greener future by excluding all automobile traffic from the area. The Suwon EcoMobility Festival 2013 was a great success, with excellent investment and coordination from the local government. The month-long event attracted over one million national and international visitors.

Last week, Johannesburg announced that it has committed to hosting the second EcoMobility World Festival! Johannesburg is, by population, the largest city in South Africa, and one of the 50 largest urban agglomerations in the world.

Cllr Parks Tau, Mayor of the City of Johnnaesburg, explained: “We want to close off certain streets in Sandton, our second largest Central Business District (CBD) to car traffic, and instead use these lanes for public transport, walking, cycling and other forms of EcoMobility during the entire Transport Month in October next year (2015)”.sandton 1

The Festival will also showcase the new Rea Vaya bus rapid transport scheme, and the public transport, cycling and walking-friendly infrastructure that the city is constructing in the Sandton CBD.

ICLEI Secretary General Gino Van Begin said: “The EcoMobility World Festival is the chance for a city to demonstrate to the entire world that citizens and city leaders can make a difference in addressing climate change, urban emissions and urban livability through transport. The way we move defines the future of our cities. EcoMobility supports a future transport system that is attractive, affordable, healthy and environmentally-friendly. Thus, benefitting the citizens in a city the most.”sandtion 2

We are delighted that Johannesburg has decided to host the second EcoMobility World Festival, continuing the efforts of Suwon and leading the way to a sustainable urban future!

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