Mayor says better transportation means better quality of life for our community
With a fleet of new and modern buses that will provide a better standard of life for residents and visitors to La Paz, Mayor Esther Ponce Beltran gave the green light to the start of the first 8 of 36 units that will be be incorporated into the public transportation routes in the capital.
Accompanied by business leaders and civil society organizations, the Mayor stressed the interest of her administration in the modernization of public transport in La Paz and to keep improving the city to be one of the best in Mexico. She said this would be the start of a new chapter for the city, its inhabitants, for business owners and for the government because here in this city, it is important to do things.
Ponce Beltran said that the integration of the new buses are an important aspect of the modernization of the transport system and in the fact, there has been nothing done in the past 30 years to better the system.
The new buses will be operated by Grupo Aguila, which will slowly take away the routes from Pesero operators, which are independently contracted small buses that have been rooming around the city, without repair, the last few decades. The routes and pesero contracts are dictated by the city.
The city also sets bus fares. Over the past decade, fairs have shot up from 3 pesos to 10 pesos a route (if you need to take two buses to get to your destination, there are no transfers). Students and seniors with identification cards pay 5 pesos a route.
According to reports, the new units will have an access ramp for wheelchairs, air conditioning, a GPS locator, security cameras, free internet service, six emergency exits, safety belts on all seats, mechanical safety systems and electronic readers for prepaid cards.
It was also announced that all units are 2015 Volvo models and can accommodate up to 41 passengers seated and 58 standing. There are also two spaces on each unit for wheelchairs.
Since taking office over two years ago, the Mayor has been slowly improving the public transportation system in the city. She announced in December of 2012 that La Paz would be taking part in the Emerging and Sustainable Cities Initiative developed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The initiative was to help chart a path for La Paz to become an example of urban excellence, both nationally and regionally. One of the major recommendations that came out of the initiative was for La Paz to
Improve mobility in the City of La Paz by developing a master plan for transportation and an urban mobility plan, to modernize and improve public transportation routes. In addition, the plan proposes strategies to adapt pedestrian spaces, mainly those located downtown, to meet the needs of La Paz residents in harmonious ways.
In February of 2013, the Mayor announced that the first commitments had been realized in improving public transportation. The Offices of Security and Transport presented the uniforms that all bus drivers should be wearing while on duty and the Municipal Institute of Youth presented the new discount card for students of the ages of 12 to 29. With the card, students receive discounts on fares (50% off the regular fare, 365 days of the year) as well as promotions and benefits to different commercial establishments in the city.
Mayor Ponce also delivered the first of 87 promised bus stops that are to be located in different areas of the city where they are needed. The bus stops are made of metal, provide shade and a place to sit and are easy to install and easy to clean.