PRESS RELEASE: Young children-friendly mobility policy for Pune
Pune, March 6, 2023: Pune city, in collaboration with WRI India, today conducted a muti-stakeholder convening to gather inputs on making urban mobility, in the city, young children and caregiver-friendly.
The event was organised by Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and attended by officials from the Road Department, Garden Department, Health Department, Education Department, Social Welfare Department, Environmental Department, Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS), Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Ltd. (PMPML), Pune Smart City Development Corporation Ltd. along with members representing different civil society organisations.
PMC is preparing an infant, toddler, and caregiver (ITC) friendly mobility plan in collaboration with World Resources Institute India (WRI India) and Parisar supported by Bernard Van Leer Foundation under the Urban95 program. The plan for Pune will also provide inputs on the state level policy brief focused on the mobility of young children and caregivers.
The event saw the stakeholders brainstorm on how mobility for young children in Pune can be enhanced through a safer, more accessible, and healthier street environment. The stakeholders provided inputs on the potential areas where the sectoral agencies can collaborate to achieve inclusive mobility that works for all. They also discussed critical areas in the city that need intervention and outlined mobility improvements that could be implemented through the coordinated efforts of all stakeholders.
Speaking at the convening, Mr. Vikas Dhakane, Additional Municipal Commissioner, Pune Municipal Corporation, said, “Pune Municipal Corporation has been actively working towards making the city children-friendly. Mobility is key to a liveable city and it is important to make it safe for this age group as they travel with their caregivers to their daily destinations. This convening brought together all stakeholders and concerned mobility service providers to facilitate the much-needed discussions. Learnings from here will help us develop an infant, toddler and caregiver-friendly mobility plan for the city and further inform the policy brief for the state of Maharashtra.”
Figure 1 The attendees brainstorming infant, toddler and caregiver friendly mobility solutions.
Ms. Rushda Majeed, Chief Programme Officer, Bernard van Leer Foundation said, “Pune is leading the way in developing city planning and management solutions for the 0-5 age children and their caregivers. The lighthouse city has implemented young children-friendly solutions in the design of public spaces, including parks and playgrounds, and access to early childhood services. Pune is now focusing on mobility plans centred around infants, toddlers and caregivers, and its efforts will likely serve as a blueprint for the state and other cities across India to emulate. We look forward to seeing the positive impact this initiative will bring about in the lives of the people in the city.”
Mr. Sreekumar Kumaraswamy, Program Director, Sustainable Cities and Transport, WRI India, said, “Safe streets and public transport impact young children and caregivers’ travel behaviour in terms of access to health, education, and other services. We congratulate Pune in taking the lead in implementing young children-friendly mobility solutions. This initiative will serve as a template for cities across Maharashtra, and the country, to emulate such concrete improvements in mobility for women and children.”
Figure 2 Attendees suggestions on the mobility infrastructure in the ITC priority zones in the city.
Chaitali Patil | WRI India
Anushree Patil | WRI India
About Bernard van Leer Foundation: BvLF is an independent foundation working worldwide to inspire and inform large scale action to improve the health and well-being of babies, toddlers and the people who care for them. It provides financial support and expertise to partners in government, civil society and business to help test and scale effective services for young children and families. Urban95 is an initiative created by the Bernard van Leer Foundation to help change the landscapes and opportunities that shape young children’s lives. Central to this initiative is the question “If you could experience the city from 95cm, what would you change?” Working with city leaders, planners, architects, and innovators, Urban95 is helping bring this perspective to the centre of design decisions in cities around the world.
About WRI India: WRI India, an independent charity legally registered as the India Resources Trust, provides objective information and practical proposals to foster environmentally sound and socially equitable development. Our work focuses on building sustainable and liveable cities and working towards a low carbon economy. Through research, analysis, and recommendations, WRI India puts ideas into action to build transformative solutions to protect the earth, promote livelihoods, and enhance human well-being. We are inspired by and associated with World Resources Institute (WRI), a global research organisation. Know more: www.wri-india.org
About Parisar: Parisar is an NGO working in the field of environmental awareness, education and action since its formation in the early 1980s. Its area of interest spreads across a wide range of subjects from nature conservation to sustainable development, in fact everything that affects our ability to live on the earth- the air, the water, the quality of land- all that which contributes to our healthy planet and in turn healthy life. Parisar engages in advocacy for potential changes that are both concrete and comprehensive. To this end, it engages with multiple stakeholders viz., Municipal Corporation, Traffic Police, NGOs, Educational Institutions, Local groups and individuals. Know more: www.parisar.org