„Doing nothing is the most expensive option!“
More than 65 transport experts from the MENA region engaged in finding sustainable transport solutions for their cities in a workshop in Cairo, Egypt jointly organized by IsDB and GIZ SUTP
From all of the cities worldwide: Cairo is one of the most stuck in traffic and meanwhile loses millions of dollars due to congestion every day. Thus, it was the perfect place for almost 65 transport experts, especially from the MENA region, to participate in a Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning workshop, jointly organized by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
The Egyptian Ministry of Transport and the Greater Cairo Transport Regulatory Authority welcomed the participants. The workshop focused on the need to develop and implement an integrated transport planning process, with systems such as Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) as a possible solution for overloaded urban space filled with cars.
That there is no option to buy out of congestion with roads is a fact. However, most cities still focus on cars in their urban transport planning. Finding the few entry points, where change-making in overloaded urban transport systems is possible and public transport can be improved, is often very difficult. Thus, the organizing team was pleased to see vivid debates and interaction between participants from Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Tunisia and of course Egypt. They discussed in group work what the institutional setup for the successful implementation of sustainable urban transport systems should be and identified who the key stakeholders in urban transport planning are, how engagement with them is possible and how integration with other modes can be realized.
The participants were supported and able to benefit from the expertise of internationally renowned transport experts Manfred Breithaupt and Dario Hidalgo, who presented best practices from all over the world. Both highlighted that whatever will be provided, will be used: whether its streets for cars or public transport options, bike lanes and pedestrian zones for the people. Thus, in this case, access attracts demand.
It was the 6th workshop on Sustainable Mobility that IsDB and GIZ SUTP have organized, to bring transport experts together, to support them in their efforts in making their transport systems more sustainable and to emphasize, that roads for cars are not a sign of development.