The EcoMobility World Festival 2015 will take place in Sandton, Johannesburg during the month of October and will offer a view of the City in the future, with active street life and social inclusivity, served by a sustainable transport system.
The Festival will enable residents and visitors from across the globe to experience what a future, car-free precinct would look and feel like.
A core part of the Sandton CBD use will be closed for regular traffic for the duration of the Festival. Residents, workers, the business community and visitors will, however, have full access to the entire precinct through expanded public transport and arrangements to encourage cycling and pedestrian activities.
What happens in Sandton in October 2015 will provide direction to global efforts to promote EcoMobility and sustainable transport systems. Within South Africa the Festival will promote the concepts of inclusivity and social cohesion. The urban hub of Sandton will be linked to the adjacent township of Alexandra and many of the events are designed to integrate these diverse neighbourhoods.
The infrastructure provided by the City to support the Festival ? and the visionary plans to expand sustainable public transport systems within Johannesburg ? will combine to leave a lasting legacy for generations to come.
WHAT IS ECOMOBILITY?
EcoMobility is a term that is used to describe travel through integrated, socially inclusive, and environmentally friendly options namely walking, cycling, wheeling and public transport options. It is a mobile transport choice that has low to no emissions compared to the personal automobiles powered by fossil fuels. It denotes a new approach to mobility that highlights the importance of public and non-motorized transport and promotes an integrated use of all modes in a city.
BENEFITS OF ECOMOBILITY
- enhances the quality of life of citizens, offers a larger variety of travel choices and promotes social cohesion.
- is a condition for a liveable city. It enables a better use of public space and reduces the levels of noise and air pollution.
- is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive.
- EcoMobile transport choices have low to no emissions compared to the personal automobiles powered by fossil fuels.
- supports the use of light electric vehicles, provided that the source of the electricity is from renewable energy sources.
- encourages citizens to take up healthy activities such as cycling and walking, thus contributing to the physical and mental well-being of communities.
Our cities are increasing in size in terms of population and space. Our needs for mobility have to be met and at times our actions on transport have fallen behind our challenges. A way out of such a situation is to muster the existing opportunities in our cities.
- EcoMobility is a way to prioritise such opportunities ? such as walking, cycling, and public transport ? in an integrated fashion and offer multi-modal transport options that meet the needs of most people.
- Walking is the most sustainable way of moving but it can also be done by using the bicycle, tricycle, velomobile, wheelchair, push scooters or skates. Depending on the needs and abilities of users other devices such as walking aids, trailers, hand carts, shopping carts, and trolley can also be used to support EcoMobile behaviour.
- Public transport plays a major role in moving society towards EcoMobility. This includes the use of buses, trams, subways, light rail, trains, velo-taxis, pedicabs, rickshaws, ferries, and low-emission taxis. Car sharing schemes and the introduction of high-occupancy vehicle lanes are regarded as supplementary actions that will contribute to the conversion to EcoMobility because of its potential to reduce congestion.