Mexico City: Commute by bike, or else

Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard ordered city workers to commute by bike on the first Monday of each month, meeting with administration secretaries, sub-secretaries, and general directors and telling them not to take his cycling program lightly.

Ebrard said a primary goal is to demonstrate the viability of bicycles as a means of transportation in the city. He also said the city will soon build a bike station on the Eje Central specifically for city employees. The new city regulation that has just come into force is aimed at reducing traffic and pollution in one of the most congested cities in the world.

Only 0.7% of all journeys in the capital are by bicycle – and Mr Ebrard aims to increase to 2% in three years’ time and 5% in six years.

Those officials who cannot cycle because of health reasons, or because they live too far from work, will be allowed to use public transport, but not their vehicle. Regarding statements made by the city attorney general and public security secretary that they are reluctant to participate, Ebrard said everyone had to comply with the order.

“If they are opposed for reasons of security, then . ´d suggest they do. ´t publicize the route they plan to take,” Ebrard said. “Anyway, a big SUV is more visible than a bicycle.”

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