Improving walkability and pedestrian facilities is one of the less prioritized measures for sustainable urban transport by policymakers and development organizations.
Clean Air Asia (formerly Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities) with support from different partners conducted walkability surveys in 23 Asian cities to better understand the state of walkability and pedestrian issues. The cities were Lanzhou, Hong Kong SAR (China), Indore, Chennai, Bhubaneshwar, Pune, Rajkot, Surat, Bangalore, Kota (India), Jakarta (Indonesia), Male (Maldives), Karachi, Islamabad (Pakistan), Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia), Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, Pokhara (Nepal), Cebu , Davao, Manila (Philippines), Colombo (Sri Lanka). Vientiane in Laos is the latest city in the list.
The “Walkability Index” (with rating system from 0- lowest to 100- highest) provides an overview of the current pedestrian infrastructure and policies in the cities which can be used to develop and propose pedestrian focused solutions.
The main objective of walkability surveys is to benchmark cities against different walkability parameters and to inform policy makers, development agencies and other stakeholders on the results to enable them to improve walkability. The surveys allow not only the comparison of pedestrian infrastructure and support in terms of policies and services in different cities but also identifies specific actions that cities can take to improve their infrastructure and provide inputs to related policies and services.
The Walkability Asia project, (http://walkabilityasia.org), provides an online platform of information that aims to raise the profile of walkability as a development agenda in Asian cities. Established by the Clean Air Asia and its partners, the website documents metrics and data on walkability that is relevant for government agencies, funding agencies, non-government organizations, academia and other concerned parties. The website also communicates improvements in walkability in Asian countries, provides a broad list of sources that will enable public participation and guide public and private sector decision-making towards sound policy. This online platform will showcase news reports, fact sheets, survey tools, photos and videos of pedestrian improvements and share best practices and campaigns of government institutions, civil society and private sectors to facilitate the increase of public consciousness on walking as a preferred low-emission mode of transport.
“Congratulations to CAI Asia for this walk to future. Walk on!”
Chandan Roy Sanyal – Indian Actor