The club Sustainable Development for a Civil Society organised a photo competition and exhibition of pictures presenting the mobility measures implemented in Sofia during the last three years.
Background & Objectives
Public transport is gradually losing its primary position. According to municipal data, commuting time by public transport in Sofia is 30 minutes - relatively high given the city’s size - and is increasing. Additionally, the rising prices of transport services, the irregularity and unreliability of services and the conditions of vehicles all mean many people prefer to use their cars. To solve their transport problems, the Sofia Municipality set priorities for action. One of these was to promote the use of public transport services. A competition was organised in order to select outstanding pictures showing the positive results of the introduction of mobility measures in the Bulgarian capital during the last three years. One of the aims of this activity was to inform Bulgarian citizens about the positive impact of new and less popular mobility measures, and to encourage the state decision-makers and Sofia Municipality to continue introducing sustainable transport measures in the capital.
The exhibition’s official opening was in the Municipal Cultural Centre. Sofia Municipality provided its exhibition hall free of charge for a month. The competition was promoted and supported by the Sofia Mobility Centre, Bulgarian National Radio, Sofia Chamber of Commerce, the Association of Bulgarian NGOs and many youth groups.>CSDCS (Club "Sustainable Development of Civil Society") received photos not only from Sofia, but also from other Bulgarian cities and even from abroad. In total there were 80 entrants. The final selection included photographs by 20 entrants. The opening event was visited by many stakeholders and people interested in mobility management and sustainable transport issues. The jury delivered one first and two second place awards to the best pictures.
The costs totalled about €3,000. This covered the picture stands, photo-services, preparation of an electronic variant of the exhibition, fees for the jury and the monetary value of the awards.
The exhibition was opened for a month in central Sofia: the Municipal Cultural Centre on “Slaveikov” square, which is the main cultural point of the capital. The biggest library in Sofia is located in the same building and is visited by hundreds of people every day. About 3000 people (mainly youth) were informed about the BENEFIT project, its goals and objectives, and about the achievements of the Bulgarian capital in the field of mobility management.
The promotion of mobility management achievements encouraged the municipality to introduce more measures and to receive support from civil society for some unpopular initiatives like an increase in parking fees, enlargement of the blue zone, closure of the main streets in the city centre for transport, etc.