Merida mayor conducts his agenda without a car for a day

Mauricio Vila riding his bike across Merida's downtown (PHOTO FERNANDO ACOSTA YAM / DY)

On Tuesday Sept. 29, Merida Mayor Mauricio Vila Dosal used buses and taxis, rode a bike and walked to go to locations required by his agenda for the day.


The mayor started the day by taking a bus without air conditioning from his home in north Merida to City Hall. He rode his bike across the Plaza Grande to the offices of the Culture Agency, and from there returned to City Hall. Before that, he walked to and from City Hall and the City Clerk’s Office, and at the end of the day returned to his residence in a taxi.

He managed to keep his appointments without a personal automobile, as do thousands of Meridanos and people who come from throughout Yucatan to study, work, seek medical advice and other services, shop, do errands to offices, go to daily market, and so on.

The mayor reported that this effort was part of the commitment he made to join the “World Day without Cars” held last week that was organized by the collective Cicloturixes.

That group conducted various activities at that time and called on Meridanos to join this initiative held in favor of universal mobility, reducing traffic flow, combating pollution from motor vehicles, promoting public transport and decreasing traffic accidents, among other benefits.

Cicloturixes members even issued a challenge to the people moving by car: leave the car at home and use other alternatives to get around the city.

Vila Dosal said he had planned to join this global initiative, but the day it was done he traveled to Mexico City and could not do so.

Mauricio Vila riding his bike across Merida's downtown (PHOTO FERNANDO ACOSTA YAM / DY)
Mauricio Vila riding his bike across Merida’s downtown

Vila Dosal added that Monday Sept. 28, at the start of his week of activities, he did not because the first item on his agenda was to be in the Yucatan Country Club to participate in the official opening of the Madison School. “No unit of public passenger transport reaches here,” added the mayor.

Vila Dosal clarified that the decision not to use a car was a personal initiative. He said he invited the members of his cabinet to join it.

The mayor, who took office in August, has also declined to use an official city-owned SUV designated for the mayor’s transpotation. He donated this vehicle to a lower-income Merida neighborhood to help with citizen transporation.

Vila Dosal’s initiative comes amid growing concerns about traffic congestion in downtown Merida, where thousands of cars, buses, vans, motorbikes and other vehicles are increasingly crowding, polluting and testing the limits of the city’s streets.

Source:  Diario de Yucatan