September 16, 2013

ITDP Hosts TransBrasil TOD Planning Session

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As part of the Our Cities Ourselves visioning program, ITDP organized a recent design charrette with City of Rio officials to discuss transit-oriented development (TOD) around a yet-to-be-built TransBrasil BRT station in Bonsucesso, a neighborhood in the city’s North Zone. Participants included about 12 representatives from the Secretary of Planning, Transport, Public Works, the State Transport Department and the PPP Unit of the Mayor’s office. This focus group was one of the first occasions that these different departments worked together and exchanged ideas for the study area.

Bonsucesso is being used as a pilot study project for how the city approaches station area planning. Participants went on a site visit together using evaluation tools developed by ITDP with support from Vicente del Rio, a Brazilian architect and urbanist, and came up with ideas for how to make improvements based on ITDP’s principles for TOD. One of the results may be that future detailed-development plans (known locally as PEUs) around any station area in the city will require a parking cap while also allowing higher densities.

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TransBrasil will be one of the highest capacity BRT corridors in the world and the only line that will enter Rio’s historic downtown. The BRT will run along a highly trafficked motorway called Avenida Brasil that was built in the 1950s and serves as the main artery connecting many neighborhoods to the city’s main employment district. It will help rationalize bus service along the corridor. Participants in the charrette recognized that it has the potential to leverage investment and capture new development interest due to its proximity to the downtown.

A synthesis of the vision the city officials shaped together will be presented to the public accompanied by a discussion with leading international experts on BRT & TOD on September 18, 2013 at the Jardim Botânico. For more information, please see the seminar program.

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