Drivers in Mexico City may have cause to rejoice: some 30,000 topes, or speed bumps, are slated for removal or replacement with other means of slowing traffic.
The city’s goal is to make traffic flow more efficient and improve air quality.
Deputy Víctor Hugo Romo, proponent of the initiative, said vehicle traffic should move more efficiently, pedestrians’ safety improved and environmental effects reduced.
Romo estimated that some 30,000 topes in the capital were planned arbitrarily and installed without conducting any studies or taking into consideration their negative environmental implications.
Many are also unnecessary, he said.
The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) has conducted studies that have shown that an internal combustion engine generates 300% more emissions when forced to halt completely before crossing a tope.
A diesel engine under the same conditions, the study also found, will generate 900% more pollutants.
Romo told the newspaper Reforma that some 10,000 topes are to be removed from the capital’s main and primary roads in a first stage of the project.
Given that topes seem to procreate much like rabbits, frequently appearing as twins and even triplets, motorists might wonder how effective the new law will be. As Damien Cave wrote in the New York Times in June, there appear to be few rules governing what they look like or where they go.
“I’ve seen makeshift topes materialize in upper-class neighborhoods from one day to the next, and I’ve seen topes that were built, I’m convinced, just to make drivers slow down for vendors who sell candy and water.”
Mexico City drivers will have to wait and see.
Source: El Universal (sp)