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8th Virtual Clinic Seeks to Promote Sustainable Mobility in ASEAN Cities

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On 24 March 2022, CDIA organized its 8th Virtual Clinic in partnership with Sustainable Mobility in Metropolitan Regions in ASEAN (SMMR). It brought together city authorities primarily in the ASEAN* region to exchange insights and experiences in promoting sustainable urban mobility through a range of policy measures, tools, innovative solutions, and investments.

Over 60 local officials and development partners attended the morning and afternoon sessions, from 20 cities and 8 countries.

“What is unique about this clinic is that it served as a peer learning opportunity with participating cities on their transport issues and how they have applied innovative measures to achieve a more sustainable mobility,” says Chee Anne Roño, CDIA Urban Development Specialist. “Beyond this clinic, SMMR is a key partner of CDIA in the project preparation studies we will undertake in Vietnam, Thailand and Lao PDR.”

Officials from the cities of Baguio (Philippines) and Palembang (Indonesia), who participated in previous CDIA Virtual Clinics, shared their respective initiatives in advancing smart transportation in key development nodes, crafting mobility master plans, and integrating green space and urban renewal efforts alongside more inclusive public transport.

Officials from Vientiane (Lao PDR) and Nong Khai (Thailand) presented the challenges of cross-border crossing between Lao PDR and Thailand, and the opportunities that can arise from the proposed project on the Vientiane-Nong Khai Cross-border Cable Car, with support from CDIA. Officials from Can Tho (Viet Nam) further provided their experiences in implementing their transport initiatives and the practical application of tools and guidelines developed by SMMR. Can Tho is also a recipient of CDIA’s grant funding to carry out a project preparation study on bus rapid transit corridors.

CDIA’s urban development specialists discussed with city authorities how to prepare bankable projects and integrate climate resilience into transport and mobility projects.

The Virtual Clinic also served as a platform for SMMR to launch the ASEAN Thematic Network on Mobility Policy Evaluation, an initiative dedicated to policy evaluation, identification of common activities based on data and evidence, and capacity building focusing on planning principles. Joachim Bergerhoff, Team Leader of SMMR introduced the Toolbox for the Establishment of Metropolitan Transport Executives (MTE) in ASEAN Metropolitan Region and Guidelines for the Development of Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans (SUMP) in ASEAN Metropolitan Regions to guide cities in their mobility programs. UNESCAP further gave a deep dive on the Sustainable Urban Transport Index (SUTI) and assessing sustainability of urban mobility, seconded by a practical experience from Ho Chi Minh City (Viet Nam).

“We have had perfect presentations about data and statistics which illustrate how special tools can be used to guide and evaluate cities’ policies over time, and that’s what the thematic network is all about,” shared Joachim Bergerhoff. “The network is important for everybody’s activities. At the end of the day we just care about the projects in our own cities, but we need to get inspiration from other cities to do something better in our cities,” he added.

Since 2021, CDIA has been implementing a series of Virtual Clinics, designed to help secondary cities prioritize sustainable and climate-resilient infrastructure projects that are in line with funder priorities. So far, 221 representatives from 35 cities have participated. The clinics have strengthened collaboration with partners working to improve the enabling environment and infrastructure project preparation, generated two applications for CDIA technical assistance, and enabled CDIA’s continuous dialogue with cities even during the pandemic. The clinics were made possible with support from the European Union.

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*ASEAN – Association of Southeast Asian Nations

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Photos during the 8th Clinic:

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