January 25, 2012

San Francisco and Medellin win the 2012 Sustainable Transport Award

San Francisco, USA and Medellin, Colombia were declared the winners of the 8th annual Sustainable Transport Award. This year’s slate of nominees is unique in that the two winners, and the two honorable mentions – Cape Town and Buenos Aires – showcase a breadth of interventions that put citizens first.  Each city is also a leader in embracing social media and online technologies to reach out to those citizens, giving a better more informative and convenient service.

“These cities are setting the example of working on various fronts – giving people opportunities through high quality transport options,” said Walter Hook, chief executive officer of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy.

Image: An advertisement for SF Park
Image An advertisement for SF Park


San Francisco is using parking reform to great effect. The new ‘SFpark’ variable-rate, demand-responsive parking management system, provides real-time parking availability information online, via text and smartphone apps. The city’s ‘Pavement to Parks’ program reclaims parking spaces for public space and has created 20 new and dynamic parklets with more on the way. The city started to upgrade and expand its bike network, setting an ambitious target of 20 percent of all trips made by bicycle by 2020.

Image: A transformed Medellin street.
Image: A transformed Medellin street.


Medellin, Colombia and its metropolitan area is being recognized for its public space improvements, providing multiple options to its citizens, such as its existing cable car and metro systems and the recently inaugurated BRT project, known as Metroplús, and integrating those services.  The city created 1.6 million square meters of new park space through 25 parks and 11 urban promenades. The city also made progress with a new public bicycle program, “EnCicla,” that integrates universities and mass transit with popular city destinations; improved pedestrian crossings; and a ridesharing program, “Comparte tu carro;” as well as vehicle exhaust emissions controls and sulfur content improvements.

Image: Metrobus pulls into its first station in Buenos Aires
Image Metrobus pulls into its first station in Buenos Aires


Buenos Aires, Argentina, received an honorable mention for opening the country’s first BRT system (Metrobús) and its comprehensive investment in cycling.

Image: Cape Town’s at-level station boarding.
Image Cape Towns at level station boarding


Cape Town, South Africa, also received an honorable mention for opening the first BRT system in Africa to integrate cycling.

For more information on this year’s honorees please visit: https://www.st-award.org


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