Sunday, November 14, 2010

Object lesson about the goals of the public transport

article by camarada_d

translated and commented by yuri

One of the great taboos to be broken in this discussion about the right to the transport is the source of funding. I say this because to me it is important not only the application of zero fare in the public transport, but also the manner in which it will be enabled. I mean the idea that are the rich, the landlords, investors, who must contribute with the biggest part of the system, they are the ones who need the workers and consumers shifting from their homes to places of work and to consume; for students going to places that come to training future workers.

I still hear conversations on the subject that there is no sense in the argument above. The employers do not benefit more than workers of the transport system, they say to me. I will not go into detail about labor disputes, about ownership of labor to generate profits or how, in the end, as always, bosses earn more than workers. I just want to show a rare event: a statement from the government that clearly states what the goals of public transport are. The story is short, superficial, laconic, but nevermind. It is so significant that it pays to be posted here in full. Direct from the website O Povo from Fortaleza:

Public transport is appointed as the growth solution

The challenges of the sprawl in Fortaleza was the topic addressed by the chairman of the bidding committee of Fortaleza Urban Transport, Harrisson Marques Cardoso, during the third day of the 46th Meeting of the Brazilian Association of Real Estate Market, which is being held in the Capital. [Translator notes: Fortaleza is the capital of the state of Ceará, northeast of Brazil].

According to Cardoso, the main action to keep Fortaleza’s sprawl it is a strong investment in public transport. "It's important to take buses, subways to ease the populated areas and decentralize the investments, so the city can grow," he says.

For the real estate market, it is primordial knowing that this kind of investment is being made by the government, since the prospects identified by the entrepreneur Silvio Oliveira are that the brazilian investments will pass the current R$16.2 million to R$ 446.7 billion in 2030. (Henriette de Salvi)

Translated from:

Original Link:

Comments of the translator:

It is important to say that the main argument in all this discussion of the zero fare in the public transport is related with the fact the we need cities more equitable social and economically speaking. Beyond global warming and environmental problems, the concrete change related with our subject it's the displacement of people in the cities.

Being direct: a town only exists for those who can move inside of it. For those who can live all the urban equipaments that the modern city provide to us. The right to the transport is only a right that lead us to others rights (health, education, leisure, work etc.)

That said, I would say we need to focus, internationally speaking, our work in more social arguments and not only the environmental ones. We know that both are important, but when it comes to Zero Fare, in practice we are talking about income redistribution, which directly affects social changes.