Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning
Semester Start Date:
Saturday, September 1, 2012
In the first of a new series of IDG student profiles, we meet Weixuan Li, a second-year student in the Master in City Planning (MCP) and a first-year student Master of Science in Transportation (MST) programs. Before coming to DUSP, Weixuan received her undergraduate degree from Peking University in China.
Keep an eye out for more student profiles soon!
1. Why did you choose to come to DUSP?
In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), the environmental health research community remains focused on significant problems with the accessibility and/or adequacy of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) – and largely in rural areas. However, especially in the region’s vulnerable urban settlements, where populations are set to grow most rapidly over the coming decades, and where the cost of living is higher on average than in most rural areas, it is also critical to understand the instrumental role played by affordability in defining and addressing WASH challenges.
This project focuses on the relationship between the design of bus rapid transit (BRT) systems and the planning and design of the urban environments in which they exist, paying particular attention to the design of the street as a complex space that fulfills multiple functions beyond traffic and mobility. BRT systems represent relatively advantageous transportation interventions in urban spaces: they can be relatively quickly and affordably implemented and, if done well, offer levels of service comparable to more time- and money-intensive projects (like Metros).
The new Modal Transfer Station (CETRAM, for its name in Spanish) Ciudad Azteca, also referred to as the Mexipuerto, designed and operated by Grupo Prodi in the municipality of Ecatepec, has become a point of security for the historically dangerous and poverty stricken area. For various reasons, including improved accessibility, formalization of transit, and the provision of secure public spaces, CETRAM Ciudad Azteca is now a refuge of safety in an otherwise insecure neighborhood.
Traffic accidents are a major concern for the vast majority of government authorities worldwide. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), traffic accidents will become the fifth main cause of death by the year 2030. In Chile, five casualties occur daily as a consequence of traffic accidents, and the associated cost is equivalent to 1.5% of the nation’s GDP. Approximately, 500,000 traffic accidents were reported between 2000 and 2008, 17% of whom represented pedestrian crashes.