Wednesday, August 6, 2014

An Empty Ave. Jimenez?

An empty future for Ave. Jimenez?
A pothole on Ave. Jimenez.
In his rush to 'humanize' Bogotá, Mayor Petro seems to be shutting it down. Some of his changes, such as pedestrianizing part of Ave. Septima, have been positive. But under Petro the handsome Santamaria bullfighting stadium sits vacant, and he now appears to want to turn Ave. Jimenez into a ghost corridor.

Residents protested the other day against a city plan they claim would shut down the Museo de Oro and Las Aguas TransMilenio stations. City officials say that's not in their plans (altho I have read that it is), but that they do intend to remove one important bus line.

La Candelaria residents protest against plans to reduce or
eliminate bus service along Jimenez Ave. (Photo: El Tiempo)
The city's reasoning seems to be that the buses damage the avenue's brick surface, designed by architect Rogelio Salmona. While that is true, it's also inevitable. The avenue was intended for transit, and without it in use the city center's already chronic traffic congestion will get even worse.

And other cities, such as Portland, Oregon, seem to have discovered durable brick surfacing for bus routes.
A brick bus avenue in Portland, Oregon. (Photo: ASLA)
TransMilenio buses backed up on Ave. Jimenez.
Scenes of daily (and nightly) traffic jams in La Candelaria. With reduced bus service, they'd get worse.

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

1 comment:

Coffeemax said...

To fix the streets of Bogota requires fixing the government. As long as the government fails to hold corrupt people accountable and impose "real" punishment. Corruption will continue and infrastructure will suffer.