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Article: The path to intelligent human mobility

The infrastructure of metropolises directly impacts the lives of their citizens, which leads us to consider human mobility as an essential issue for the promotion of the quality of life of each person.. Reversing a car dependency scenario is a cultural issue. And from the advances brought by technology, important changes came like electric vehicles, car sharing, sharing bicycles and autonomous cars, for example, all arriving with the purpose of helping to advance this theme.

European capitals are good examples of investment in alternative solutions to improve human mobility. We see the concept of car sharing spreading across the continent and beyond as well.. According to a study brought by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), until the year of 2021, Europe, Asia and North America are expected to reach the mark of 35 millions of people-users of this system. This could decrease vehicle sales in the world in 550 thousand units and, consequently, effectively contribute to the mobility and sustainability solution. Furthermore, hitchhiking apps have become a reality. They have transformed the way people come and go in large urban centers around the world and can be important allies.

According to the International Union of Public Transport (UITP), in 2016, simulations carried out in the capitals of European Union countries show that the combination of high-capacity public transport with car and passenger sharing could even remove 65 decade 100 cars at peak times. Projections presented by the PwC consultancy show that the shared economy should move around US$ worldwide 335 billions in 2025 — amount 20 times greater than found in 2014, when the sector moved US$ 15 billion.

The promotion of debates on the topic and the emergence of new technological solutions are contributions that effectively help to raise this flag and highlight the importance of the theme

Latin America also advances in the theme. Even though the reality is different from Europe, we can already see some examples in the region. In Buenos Aires it has existed since 2007 the Sustainable Mobility Plan, which aims to encourage the use of public transport by its citizens. The existence of projects for the modernization of subway lines is a reality, as well as for the construction of a network of cycle paths designed to integrate strategic points of the city.

Mexico City, which has one of the worst transits in the world, has been treating the issue as a priority through initiatives such as restricting the use of private cars, subway system expansion, BRT membership (Bus Rapid Transit) and also bicycle rental system. All these initiatives protected by a mobility law enacted in 2014 – that prioritizes the pedestrian in the urban setting, from city planning to budget allocation.

When we look at the Brazilian reality, we realize we have a long way to go. Taking the city of São Paulo as a reference, the citizen of the city of São Paulo passes by, average, until 45 days stuck in traffic annually, according to information gathered by Rede Nossa São Paulo. Thinking of a pulsating metropolis where there is no time to waste, this scenario is inadmissible. The challenge is to propose alternatives that go beyond the idea of ​​rotating cars to solve the problem. In this path, the advancement of cycle paths and the extension of the subway network appear as options.

Analyzing all these examples around the world, we see that human mobility is a topic that has received increasing attention from governments and society. The promotion of debates on the topic and the emergence of new technological solutions are contributions that effectively help to raise this flag and highlight the importance of the theme. By the way, The technology, when thought collectively and also aligned with the needs of citizens, according to the reality presented by each metropolis, have, and will continue to have, a fundamental role in the conversion to have cities that we can consider them intelligent and prepared for a new reality.

By Carlos Santana, vice president of Grupo Tecnowise and director of Mobih Institute.

original content EcoDesenvolvimento.

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