On Thursday at the Ford Foundation’s Rio+20 tent, ITDP held the closing ceremony for Mobilidade+, the innovative series that broadened the debate on sustainable urban mobility by considering how mobility affects our daily lives in ways we might never have imagined.
Themes discussed over the course of the series included aspects of daily life like courtesy, youth, delivery and time. The final debate, which took place this week, was centered on the themes of citizenship, time, media and water, and attracted an audience of over 60 people during one of the busiest days of Rio+20.
This morning, ITDP’s founder Michael Replogle opened the ceremony with a personal story about how he realized that public transportation, biking and walking represent a “ticket to freedom.” His appreciation of the opportunities made possible by public transport and light modes of transportation inspired him to found ITDP in an effort to bring greater freedom and opportunities to disadvantaged people around the globe. Today, particularly in light of discussions and accomplishments at Rio+20, he sees a paradigm shift happening in the development world that will favor ITDP’s goals around the world.
Following Michael, Bill Reilly, Climate Works Board of Directors Chairman and former Director of the US delegation for Eco 92, spoke about the impressive progress that sustainable mobility made through side events in Rio, observing that “Here in Rio, the side events are the main events.” Reilly concluded that in his view, multilateral development banks’ commitment to invest $175 billion over the next ten years in sustainable public transport is the “signal news from this conference.”
Other panelists included Eduardo Vasconcellos (technical coordinator for the Mobility Observatories in Brazil (ANTP) and Latin America (CAF)), Andre Dzikus (Program Manager, United Nations Human Settlements Program, UN Habitat), and Cornie Huizenga (Joint Convener Partnership on Sustainable, Low Carbon Transport –SloCaT).
Mobilidade+ was conceptualized by ITDP Brazil and Studio-X Rio, funded by Cooperación Andina de Fomento (CAF), with institutional support by Ford Foundation, and in partnership with SLoCaT, Transporte Ativo, UN Habitat and C40 Rio. Through a series of debates (on the 5th, 12th and 19th of June) mobility was associated with 12 other concepts, featuring well-known experts. The events will be used to generate videos that will reach global audiences through a dynamic social media outreach campaign.