‘Car Centric’ Chaotic Cities

‘Car Centric’ Chaotic Cities‘Car Centric’ Chaotic Cities

The most challenging issue in the field of urban transport and traffic management for the next couple of years is improving traffic culture in the capital and other urban centers through more effective citizen services, says Seyyed Jafar Hashemi Tashakkori, Tehran deputy mayor for transport and traffic affairs.

At present the prevailing trend in Tehran and other metropolises is ‘car-centric’ chaos. In essence, it should change to ‘human-centric’ with focus on better traffic management and more facilities for citizens in  the matter of public transport, pedestrian sidewalks, brighter urban lighting and so on. In a human-centered city, instead of reducing sidewalks for streets widening, street width is reduced to increase pavement space, Mehr news agency reported.

Presently, the culture of using more private cars in the capital for commuting even short distances has resulted in serious neglect of pedestrian rights. Citizens also have problems walking on the pavements as inappropriate slopes and steps, narrow width of sidewalks, and pathways strewn with building debris all create obstacles.


Raising awareness about traffic rules, no doubt, can help respect pedestrian rights.

But traffic culture will not change by just raising people’s awareness through banners and posters as there is a tendency to ignore such publicity campaigns. “With the help of modern monitoring equipment to ensure drivers’ adherence to rules, intelligent control similar to what is currently installed in urban tunnels and the Sadr two-level highway, we are able to restore traffic order to some extent in the city,” Tashakkori said.

At present the annual cost of traffic accidents and their resulting damages is $ 4 billion. Also, 20,000 people lose their lives and 400,000 become disabled due to the accidents annually.