This story is from the 2014 Access 25. Explore more from this issue

Smart Transit

Many people living in low-income housing spend up to five times more on transportation than they do on housing. Here’s how one organization is trying to change that.

It’s an alarming trend shared by millions worldwide as chaotic growth overwhelms inadequate infrastructure and city planning. At least 615 million more city dwellers are expected in India and China alone by 2030. Spiraling congestion, air pollution, traffic injuries and death put transportation at the center of this problem. But when implemented sustainably, transportation also holds the promise for improving lives.

That’s the mission of EMBARQ, the World Resources Institute’s Center for Sustainable Transportation. It’s in the midst of a five-year plan to influence more than 200 cities to adopt solutions like bus rapid transit. Their goal: to safely and economically connect people like Madelina to jobs and a better life.

EMBARQ’s flagship Metrobus mass transit project in Mexico’s capital facilitates 900,000 trips a day, and last year it reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 120,000 tons. And it’s saving lives. Working with FedEx safety experts, the EMBARQ Safety First project is dramatically reducing the road accident rate through new driver training programs. Go to to learn more.

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