Promoting environment-friendly livable cities in Bangladesh
The health of the Bangladeshi population is greatly affected by the state of its cities. As Bangladesh tries to tackle major problems such as climate change, non-communicable diseases, road safey, and air pollution, ensuring cities are livable is critically important. This program, implemented by HealthBridge partner Work for a Better Bangladesh, focuses on achieving outcomes in three main areas:
- Pedestrian Rights - Pedestrians are of vital importance to a city and yet they face many obstacles to moving safely, easily and conveniently. WBB is working with local groups to advocate for ways to remove these barriers, which will result in improved safety and reduced congestion, and help create a more pleasant living environment.
- Active and Safe Routes to School - Children should be able to walk or school safely. Unfortunately, the streets of Dhaka are congested with car traffic and this creates an unsafe situation for children. WBB is working with local schools to make the trip to school safer by working with government officials to improve the pedestrian infrastructure and by educating parents and drivers.
- Public and Open Spaces- Parks play an important role in children’s development, and provide important opportunities for local residents to be active and socialize. Unfortunately Dhaka has few parks and the parks that do exist are often of poor quality. WBB is working with local groups to enhance people’s access to parks and the quality of their experiences by encouraging supportive policies and working with the community on park pilot projects.
Key Successes to Date:
- During the World Car-Free Day event in 2016, the Honourable Mayor of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) announced they would open one pedestrian-only street in 2017.
- Honourable Minister of Road, Transport, and Bridges announced they will restrict the ownership of private automobiles in the city. The draft of the new Act will permit each family to have only one vehicle. This restriction is the first of its kind in Bangladesh and will go a long way to controlling car use in the city.
- Dhaka North City Corporation installed 3000 waste bins throughout the city, resulting in cleaner streets and public spaces.
- Advocacy efforts help cancel the Dhaka South City Corporation’s plans to relocate vendors to a local park. These vendors use the park for their livelihoods and relocation would have meant many would lose their income
- Decreased number of people being injured by the pedestrian infrastructure.
- Decreased number of people who are injured as a result of pedestrian/vehicle collisions and conflicts
- Increased number of schools that implement the ASRTS program.
- Decreased number of children injured by the pedestrian infrastructure.
- Decreased number of children injured as a result of pedestrian/vehicle collisions and conflicts.
- Increased number of children walking to school.
- Increased number of safe and accessible public and open spaces.
- Increased number of children playing in public and open spaces.
- Increased number of women and girls using public spaces.
- Increased number of people living disability using public spaces.
- Final Narrative Report April 2017 - Summary Report
- Final Narrative Report April 2016
- Final Narrative Report April 2015
- Final Narrative Report April 2014
Efroymson, D, Hossain, M. Improving Conditions For Walking - Research and Action in Dhaka Bangladesh. Journeys, 2015.
Shumi, S., Zuidgeest, M.H.P., Martinez, J.A., Efroymson, D., and van Maarseven, M.F.A.M. Walkability and quality of life for garment factory workers in Bangladesh. Applied Research in Quality of Life, 2014.