What Chilean cities can learn from the “15-minute City” Paris.
- Road traffic largest source of air pollution in cities according to WHO
- 81% of Chileans see quality of life as being impaired by emissions
Santiago de Chile. October 22, 2020 – 81 percent of Chilean citizens urgently want to reduce emissions from road traffic. 82 percent blame noise, air pollution and other burdens for health problems – these are findings of the representative survey “Kapsch TrafficCom Index 2020”. New concepts such as the “15-minute City“ in Paris point the way to prolonging people's experiences with cleaner air and less traffic in post-corona times.
The negative effects of road traffic have returned very quickly to the political agenda after the lockdown during the corona crisis. While in Santiago a plan to reassign spaces for pedestrians and cyclists has been implemented in a busy downtown area, in Europe Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo is pursuing nothing less than an urban planning revolution with her concept of the “15-minute City”: Parisians should be able to reach everything they need for life from their doorstep within fifteen minutes on foot or by bike: grocery stores, health centers, schools, parks and workplaces. To make this possible, Hidalgo’s first step was to block central traffic routes for cars and convert them into bicycle expressways.
What we can learn from the “15-minute City”.
“The city of Paris has succeeded in reacting quickly to the corona crisis with a new mobility concept that makes social distancing possible on the streets,” says Emilio Rivas, Executive Vice President Sales of Kapsch TrafficCom for Latin America. “The concept of the 15-minute City contains many important cornerstones, but it’s an approach for the long term that may take a long time to implement. There are intelligent transportation systems available today though, that are more effective to help keep traffic related emissions at the current levels and further reduce them in the future. They can bring quick results while also laying the basis for flexible long-term changes.”
Digital technology provides opportunities.
Many future-oriented cities are pursuing the goal of clearing the streets for bicycles and pedestrians. “But if traffic is just shifted to other city routes, the positive impact won’t be noticeable,” explains Rivas. For this reason, the expert recommends introducing a digitally connected mobility management approach. This includes, for example, traffic light control systems which automatically adapt to the current traffic situation. In pilot cities, it would reduce congestion times by up to 25 percent. The widespread use of SIM cards and vehicle-based GPS also makes it possible to capture and use real-time traffic data from all road users to manage mobility intelligently. “For quick success, government officials should focus on developing a strategy to make the best use of the possibilities provided by digitally connected mobility. Besides introducing driving bans for cars, it is also important to holistically manage and improve people's mobility. There are smart city solutions available today to prolong people's experiences with cleaner air and less traffic in post-corona times.”
The survey results reveal a need for action.
About the survey “Kapsch TrafficCom Index”.
The Kapsch TrafficCom index was conducted with the support of a professional market research institute. A total of 9,000 representative in nine countries were asked their views on their current traffic situation, road congestion, and strategies to improve traffic management: USA (n=1,000), Argentina (n=1,000), Chile (n=1,000), UK (n=1,000), Germany (n=1,000), Austria (n=1,000), France (n=1,000), Spain (n=1,000), Australia (n=1,000).
Kapsch TrafficCom is a globally renowned provider of transportation solutions for sustainable mobility. Innovative solutions in the application fields of tolling, tolling services, traffic management and demand management contribute to a healthy world without congestion.
Kapsch has brought projects to fruition in more than 50 countries around the globe. With one-stop solutions, the company covers the entire value chain of customers, from components to design and implementation to the operation of systems.
As part of the Kapsch Group and headquartered in Vienna, Kapsch TrafficCom has subsidiaries and branches in more than 30 countries. It has been listed in the Prime Market segment of the Vienna Stock Exchange since 2007 (ticker symbol: KTCG). In its 2019/20 financial year, around 5,100 employees generated revenues of EUR 731.2 million.