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Hwaseomun Street before.
Hwaseomun Street after.

Car-free Suwon hosts the first EcoMobility World Festival

February 25, 2013

Pledging to reduce 40% of the city’s CO2 emissions from 2005 levels by 2030, the city of Suwon – Korea’s first planned city which houses the UNESCO site of Hwaseong Fortress and the global headquarter of tech giant Samsung Electronics, is hosting the first EcoMobility World Festival in September 2013.

With support from UN-HABITAT, the EcoMobility World Festival co-organized by ICLEI and the City government of Suwon will see the Haenggung-dong neighborhood transformed into a car-free zone. For the entire month, citizens and festival participants will experience an ecomobile lifestyle by favoring walking, cycling and passenging – transport means that are low-emission, safe and resource-efficient.

Instead of getting stuck at Hwaseomun Street – a street that is usually congested with illegally parked cars and bottle neck traffics, citizens will be able to walk and enjoy the fresh air that come along with the expanded footpaths and newly planted trees. Plans are already underway to improve the infrastructure of the neighborhood, such as burying electric cablings underground and upgrading the sewerage system.

“Our city is attempting to improve the street facilities in a neighborhood that has always been lagging behind due to the development restrictions relating to the preservation of Hwaseong Fortress. Our aim is to create streets where modernity and tradition can coexist, “said Yeom, Tae-Young, Mayor of Suwon.

The first city to report its Local Agenda 21 projects to the UN, Suwon has hosted various national and international conferences on sustainability, including the Asia-Pacific Agrobiodiversity symposium in 2010 and the Suwon Conference on Low Carbon, Green Cities in North-East Asia in 2011.

Find out how you can participate in the EcoMobility World Festival or contact us at ecomobility.festival@iclei.org

EcoMobility World Festival is one of the three main EcoMobility projects by ICLEI Secretariat, the other two are: EcoMobility Alliance – an alliance of cities working towards greater sustainability in mobility, and EcoMobility SHIFT – an assessment and audit Scheme that helps cities enhance their performance in sustainable mobility.