Less than two months before the start of the Confederations Cup—considered the test run for the 2014 World Cup—urban mobility projects in Fortaleza, Brazil, are still less than halfway complete.
On April 24 – 26, Helena Orenstein de Almeida, director of ITDP-Brasil, and Victoria Broadus, project manager for the Prosperity Project working on national policy and urban mobility plans, will be in Fortaleza to meet with city officials and launch a partnership with the municipal government. They will discuss city officials’ concerns, make site visits, and determine how to move forward in advising the city on urban planning best practices and the development of its urban mobility plan, which must be presented to the Ministry of Cities by early 2015.
Fortaleza’s urban mobility projects were supposed to be finished by December 2012, when the city’s newly renovated World Cup stadium, Arena Castelão, was inaugurated. But now, with the Confederations Cup looming, the city government estimates that construction along Avenida Alberto Craveiro – called the “World Cup Corridor” because of its crucial position linking the city and the stadium – are only about halfway complete. Other projects meant to ease traffic around the stadium will not be ready until 2014, according to Domingos Neto, Special Municipal Secretary of the World Cup, who was interviewed recently by Brazil’s Globo News. What’s more, construction workers have been on strike over the past 5 days, seeking salary increases. Construction on three World Cup mobility projects has thus come to a halt.
Fortaleza is the capital of Ceará state, in Brazil’s arid northeastern region. Although the city is little known outside of Brazil, it is the country’s fifth largest metropolis, with a population of nearly 2.3 million, and 3.4 million in the greater metropolitan region.