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Ahmedabad, India Wins 2010 Sustainable Transport Award

Ahmedabad, India Wins 2010 Sustainable Transport Award

City’s Janmarg Bus Rapid Transit System Reduces Carbon Emissions, Dramatically Improves Residents Access

Cities in Developing World Dominate Award

WASHINGTON, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The developing world is leapfrogging developed countries when it comes to urban transport, with the city of Ahmedabad, India, today announced as winner of the 2010 Sustainable Transport Award for the successful implementation of Janmarg, India’s first full bus rapid transit (BRT) system.

“This year’s Sustainable Transport Award nominees demonstrate the relevance of the developing world in the fight against climate change while improving citizen’s quality of life and enhancing their international competitiveness,” said Walter Hook, Executive Director of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy. “Cities have the power to significantly reduce carbon emissions by actively seeking ways to improve transport.”

The Sustainable Transport Award is given annually to a city that uses transport innovations to increase mobility for all residents, while reducing transportation greenhouse and air pollution emissions and increasing cyclist and pedestrian safety and access.

Ahmedabad’s Janmarg BRT system is a sustainable model for the future of transportation in India, where a quarter of the world’s population lives. “BRT systems can positively impact air quality if car and motorbike drivers start taking trips by bus,” said Sophie Punte, Executive Director of the Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities (CAI-ASIA). “This is particularly important in Asian cities, where air pollution levels are often far above guidelines of the World Health Organization.”

City residents have embraced their new BRT system; 18,000 daily passengers use Janmarg to commute to work, to school and elsewhere. In just a few months of operation, Janmarg has transformed the delivery of transit in South Asia. Janmarg uses innovative central median stations pulled away from the junctions. Bus stations feature passive solar design, an inexpensive way to keep stations naturally cool. The city is making continued efforts to be a leader in sustainable transport, including incorporating high-quality pedestrian facilities in some corridors, as well as bicycle lanes. Ahmedabad has initiated car-free days and recently announced more.

For the first time in the six-year history of the Sustainable Transport Award, all of the nominees are cities in developing nations. The four honorable mentions go to Cali, Colombia, for transforming citywide BRT service with MIO; Curitiba, Brazil, for opening a new BRT line and city park on a former federal highway; Guadalajara, Mexico, for completing a full BRT system in less than two years and at an affordable cost; and Johannesburg, South Africa, for creating Rea Vaya, Africa’s first BRT and the first public transit system that connects Soweto to the downtown district.

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