As part of a comprehensive mobility plan, Rosario, Argentina has made improvements to public transport, piloted a bike sharing and bike parking system, and added more public space in 2012. Rosario is currently in construction on more than 11 km of bike lanes, with even more to be added in 2013. Rosario is also implementing exclusive bus lanes and modernizing it’s bus fleet, and the city is promoting the increased use of public spaces by closing streets to cars.
Rosario, a city of 1.2 million located 300 km northwest of Buenos Aires, is the heart of the major industrial corridor, as well as a major railroad terminal and shipping center for Argentina. It is also the birthplace of Che Guevara. Since 2010, Rosario has been working on their Mobility Integrated Plan (PIM), collaboration between the city’s transport entity, ETR, civil society and international experts. The plan’s goals are to massively promote public transportation, develop non-motorized transport, and discourage the use of private cars.
Cycling and Walking
The PIM makes pedestrians and cyclists a priority, and that is demonstrated in the projects implemented in the last year. In 2012, Rosario began a public bicycle system, Unibici, which will begin with 200 bicycles and 15 stations, constructed 11 km of bikes lanes, and installed bike parking facilities for 2000 bikes around the city. They’ve also closed off recreational streets to cars on Sundays, and the “car-free Sundays” have become so popular that it is expanding to weekdays, for a total of 20 km of closed streets at every event.
Bus Travel Improvements
Rosario has also enhanced bus travel in the city in 2012. They have created 10 km of exclusive bus lanes, modified bus routes to increase accessibility and ridership, and developed apps for mobile devices to allow riders to see when buses will arrive. They have also reduced parking spaces near transit to discourage car use. Thanks to these measures, Rosarinos have seen a 30% reduction in travel time, and surveys indicate that most are very happy with the changes.