4 major cities in the world that are closing to cars

  • Lindsey Galloway
  • BBC Travel


Credit, Getty Images

When the first wave of Covid-19 prevented indoor gatherings in most countries, many cities responded quickly by imagining new ways to live in public outdoors.

Some of them created pedestrian-only streets, while others turned parking lots into temporary restaurants. Cycle lanes were also expanded, transforming streets that were previously full of cars into spaces conducive to cycling and walking.

These changes have paid dividends – and not just in increased economic activity. Studies have shown that the virus spreads less quickly in neighborhoods with large spaces for walking. And while many places have abandoned initiatives as people begin to resume normal activities, some cities have maintained measures taken in favor of pedestrians and are increasing car-free spaces even further.

We chose four cities that stood out for some of the fastest and boldest innovations in favor of pedestrians during the pandemic. They are preserving several of these initiatives, to encourage their residents and visitors to walk around the city.

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