IPPUC: The Untold Secret of Curitiba

In-House Technical Capacity for Sustainable Environmental Planning

by Tim Campbell, PhD
Urban Age Institute

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This paper is written in support of an initiative into the concept of urban sustainability being carried out by the National Academy of Sciences, the University of California at Berkeley, the Healthy Communities Foundation, and the Urban Age Institute. The initiative aims to develop tools and methods to achieve sustainable cities. Companion pieces to this paper, “Learning Cities: Acquiring Knowledge, Intelligence, and Identity in Complex Systems” (Campbell 2006) and “Lessons from Pittsburgh’s Water and Sewerage Crisis” (Feller and Feller 2006) are published separately by the Urban Age Institute. The author wishes to acknowledge the support of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation for this work. The author is grateful also for the assistance of Gordon Feller and Yuan Xiao of the Urban Age Institute. Urban Age Institutue 870 Estancia, 4th floor San Rafael, Calfironia 94903 - USA tel: +1-4154914233 email: info@UrbanAge.org www.UrbanAge.org Urban Age Magazine: www.UrbanAge.org/magazine.php

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Contents

05 06 07 12 12 13 16 18 23 23 25

Executive Summary Introduction Founding Moments: Responding to Growth Pressures Mechanisms of Success in Sustainability: Channeling Advice to the City 1. Establishing Rudiments of Urban Form: 1967-1972 2. Structuring the Transport System: 1972-1983 3. From Broad Strategy to Contraction: Inflation and Social Issue 1983-1989 4. Revival and New Powers. Surface Metro and Consolidation of the Social Sector; 1989-1994 Conclusions: Factors in the Feasibility of an Urban Think Tank 1. Origins 2. Internal and External Factors

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Annex: Time Line of IPPUC

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Bibliography

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Executive Summary
Secondary cities are emerging as critical players in the quest for urban development that is sustainable, that improves the lives of residents without compromising the prospects for future residents. In Curitiba, Brazil ,the Institute of Research and Urban Planning (Instituto da Pesquisas and Planejamento Urbano da Curitiba) has helped the city innovate in such areas as transport, solid waste, land use, environmental quality, and social programs. IPPUC is a dedicated agency with a tight mandate focused on planning and implementation of sustainable development. This paper, prepared in tandem with “Learning Cities: Acquiring Knowledge, Intelligence, and Identity in Complex Systems” (Campbell 2006), examines in detail the case of a central think tank that has provided strategic inputs in technical and policy judgment to city leadership for more than 30 years. Though receptiveness to its work has varied over successive political administrations, these inputs have been a key factor in the many successful innovations of the city. The secret to success in this planning arrangement include the following: • An institutional capability to offer high level technical and analytical inputs to the city • Long term continuity in the mandate and organizational arrangements • Independence in function and autonomy in internal management (including personnel and salaries) • Presence of foreign staff and national staff who were widely traveled • International financial support for projects • Close relationship between successive elected officials and their connections with higher levels of government. • Continuous interplay between participation of the public in the implementation of plans The innovations have been bolstered by continued political support across municipal administrations and by the positive effects of Curitiba’s relations with the state and central governments as well as with other cities. Curitiba’s many innovations evolved in mutually reinforcing ways. For instance, the public transit and road system helped both to increase transit flow and to provide an organizing framework for integrated land use planning. The public transport system in turn relies on buses and public-private partnership that shares risk and reward.

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These innovations have resulted in tangible economic and environmental benefits for Curitiba. Although there are more than 500,000 private cars in a city of 1.6 million people, three quarters of commuters take the bus. Affordable fares mean that the average low-income family spends only about 10 percent of its income on transport, which is low for Brazil. The efficient system improves productivity by speeding the movement of people, goods, and services. In terms of environmental benefits, the city has achieved a 25 percent reduction in fuel consumption with related reductions in automotive emissions. The transport system is directly responsible for the city having one of the lowest rates of ambient air pollution in Brazil.

Introduction
Around 4000 cities around the globe have reached the population range of 100,000 or more in size. They are also expanding in territorial terms. In addition, more than 70 countries are decentralizing at a time when globalization of trade is transforming the role of cities and states. These demographic and political phenomena prompt renewed attention to a quest for environmental balance and sustainability. It is timely and prudent to adopt a local rather national perspective How does urban institutional “tissue” get formed, achieve a self-conscious identity, become accepted as valuable and endorsed by the broad community, and take on the policy and practical tasks of achieving sustainable development? A previous paper (Campbell 2006) reviews a decade of research and analytical work in academic and development agencies on the importance of learning modalities – for firms, university researchers, venture capitalists, innovators, regions, and cities – and presents a rough typology of learning cities. The organizing principle of that typology is the focus held by the learning agent (whether a firm, a city or a region). Agents can be tightly focused on the business of a city, as in the case of Curitiba, Brazil, or loosely interested but available, as are some universities in cities. At the other extreme, a municipality may have no dedicated agency and indeed no long term strategy or program. Rather, like most of the local governments around the world, the city takes part in catch-as-catch-can opportunities to acquire skills in specific sectors of interest whenever they might be presented. The long tenure and multi-sectoral nature of the Curitiba case provides an example of a city technical agency focused on city development. As with the cases explored in the “Learning Cities” paper (Campbell 2006), IPPUC in Curitiba shows how dedicated attention can build a shared vision over time and create self-aware organizations.

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Founding Moments: Responding to Growth Pressures

Capital of the state of Parana and neighbor to Sao Paulo in south central Brazil, Curitiba has 1.6 million inhabitants in the city itself, 2.3 million in the metropolitan area, From the 1950s to the 1970s, it was Brazil’s fastest growing city. Beginning the 1940s with the collapse of coffee prices, mechanization in agriculture, and de-industrialization in neighboring industrial powerhouse of Sao Paulo, strong migratory pushed the growth of Curitiba to rates of over 7 percent during some decades between 1950s and 1980s. Curitiba’s position as the state’s capital and center of services, together with its central geographical location – linking agricultural production areas in the West to the main port on the Atlantic coast – helped to fuel the city’s growth, from 140,000 inhabitants in 1940 to 180,000 in 1950, and 360,000 by the 1960s. According to Lowry, in 1961 nearly 70 percent of the state’s population lived in rural areas, and by 1991 nearly 75 percent of the population lived in urban places (Lowry 2002). Rapid growth brought problems and environmental challenges typical of many cities in Latin America during its period of high rural to urban migration. The city suffered from excessive spillovers in contaminants and congestion on the one hand, and on the other, shortage of facilities, infrastructure, and services. Incoming populations began to settle in floodplains surrounding the city, resulting in recurring losses of property and life. The political context during this period was an important factor in shaping options for cities. Just as Curitiba was about to give birth to a master plan and to conceive IPPUC, Brazil was entering a military dictatorship (1964 to 1979). Under military rule, cities were expected to follow the dictates of central government irrespective of local sentiment. Cities were financially dependent on the state and federal governments, making them vulnerable to changing macro¬economic and political conditions. Cities had very little autonomy to launch initiatives or follow independently establish their own priorities. Second, at the outset of the era, the mass media was under censorship, and public participation was minimal throughout the country. Participation came to be a hallmark of Curitiba’s planning style, yet it was frowned upon in the early years of the dictatorship. Public involvement would gradually increase (after 1979), but participatory planning of the kind practiced in many cities today was not possible in Curitiba in the 1960s. Third, the military government gradually replaced import substitution policies with inflows of foreign capital and major infrastructure projects, including an increase in urban investment. Most Brazilian cities took advantage of that investment to build motorways and viaducts, thus establishing the predominance of the private car. Curitiba, however, developed an alternative course of action.

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Planning Process: the Agache Plan The course Curitiba chose was begun two decades earlier in the 1940s with the Agache Plan, the first formal attempt to respond to urban growth in Curitiba. The Agache Plan, named after French urban planner Alfred Agache in 1943, proposed a well-defined central area surrounded by residential zones, with a traffic system composed of concentric (ring) roads linked to the
Towards the end of the 1940s into the mid 1950s there began a noteworthy transformation in Curitiba with the implementation of the Preliminary Urban Plan. At this time, Architect and City Planner Alfredo Agache, the co-founder of the French Society of Urban Studies, wanted to introduce a new standard of urban space design. Agache was commissioned to create an urban plan for Curitiba and designed a development scheme that gave priority to public services such as sanitation, easing traffic congestion and creating centers that enabled the growth of both social life and commerce. After two years of preparation, economic setbacks curtailed the full implementation of the plan. However, initial parts of his plan that include large avenues, an obligatory setback of five meters from the curb as a buffer zone for new buildings, an industrial district, the civic center and the municipal market remain. While the Agache Plan was not constructed completely, from its inception it is evident that city planners in Curitiba were willing to develop the city in accordance with his vision. Santoro (2001)

central area by radial avenues – the spokeand-wheel design. This design reflected a classic planning concept. But planners failed to predict the powerful impact that the boom in private automobiles would have on city growth during the 1950s. However, the plan did foresee the need for transit rights of way, and fortunately for the city, some of the radial avenues were built and rights of way preserved. Though the city subsequently grew beyond the physical limits envisaged by the Agache Plan, the rough outline for access to the periphery were put in place.

In the 1960s when the pressures of growth were being felt acutely in the city, Mayor Ivo Aruza Prereira commissioned a new urban plan for the city adapted to modern needs. In his words: “One of the sharpest needs felt by the population was a revision of the Agache plan, not because it had defects, but because (with the growth of the city and state interference) it… had become obsolete.” (IPPUC website, 2005). In addition to the basic radial pattern, a key legacy of the Agache Plan the perception that planning could help solve urban growth-related problems. This perception was acted upon in 1964 when the city government

These central tenets of the Curitiba Master Plan laid the groundwork for a range of transport innovations, among them that commerce, services, and residences should expand in a linear manner from the city center along “structural axes.”

organized a competition for the preparation of the “Preliminary Urban Plan,” which later became the Curitiba Master Plan.

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Curitiba Master Plan. Curitiba’s preliminary urban plan was developed in 1964 by SERETE (Society of Studies and Projects), and Jorge Wilheim-Associated Architects, with the collaboration of local technicians. Among these technicians were Lubomir Ficinski and Jaime Lerner, key figures whose vision of planning was to endure for three decades in Curitiba. Within a year, a series of public debates and seminars were organized in partnership with the mayor’s office and civil society on the topic of “Curitiba Tomorrow.” These events brought the plan into public debate: its objectives of open and transparent planning engaged the local population. The general approach of the new plan was to improve the quality of life in the city, and in particular, to create an integrated transport system coordinated with land use. These ideas were designed to reduce congestion and preserve the traditional center of the city, to contain the growth of the city within its physical and territorial limits, and to create supportive economic conditions for urban development in the city. These central tenets of the Curitiba Master Plan laid the groundwork for a range of transport innovations, among them that commerce, services, and residences should expand in a linear manner from the city center along “structural axes.” The plan laid out guidelines to: 1. Change the radial urban growth trend to a linear one by integrating the road network, transport, and land use, 2. Decongest the central business district while preserving its historic center, 3. Manage, not prevent, population growth, 4. Provide economic support to urban development, and 5. Support greater mobility by improving infrastructure. Profile and Governance of IPPUC. Created in 1965 to implement the Master Plan, IPPUC was founded as a municipal autarchy, giving it certain administrative and functional independence (as per Law 2660, of December 1st, 1965, and regulated by Decree 19l0, of December 7, 1965). In the formation of IPPUC, then mayor Ivo Arzua, believing that a mere advisory office would not be sufficient to lead the reforms foreseen in the Plan, made sure the new agency had specific duties related to implementation of the plan. He sought, and obtained the support of the association of architects, commercial associations and other interested groups.1

1 Among the many supporters contracted were Jaime Lerner, Luis Fortes Neto, Joel Ramalho, José Gandolfi, who were later absorbed by City Hall.

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The Institute was governed by a Board of Directors, a Deliberative Council, chaired by the mayor, and a President. The Board was composed mainly of the directors of departments in city hall, city council representatives (2), and the Institute’s president, an appointment of the mayor. At the heart of IPPUC were three technical departments (“superintendencias”), one in planning, another for project execution, and a third for urban research. In addition, support structures, including administration and finance, handled the internal mechanisms of the institution’s operation. A Center of Data Processing (CPD), was in charge of processing the data needed for municipal planning and administration. Broad membership of political leaders and technical professionals on the Board and Council favored approval of IPPUC’s policies. The Deliberative Council was empowered to propose laws on matters that were important but not considered in the master plan, such as land density regulations and fiscal mechanisms. In addition, the Council supervised the work of IPPUC in implementing the plan. The Institute was created with its own pay roll, separated from the pay roll of the municipal government. IPPUC expenses were approved by the board. These features of personnel and legal status made it possible to escape the deadening impact often seen in quasi-public agencies in Latin American cities. With its independence, it was possible for IPPUC to both attract and contract professionals, including foreign experts. According to Santoro (2001), experts from Brazil and abroad enriched the original proposals foreseen in the Plan. Within a few years of its founding, more than 60 technicians were working in IPPUC. Among them there were architects, engineers, lawyers, sociologists, and educators. They were Polish, Chilean, Argentine, Bolivian, French, all of them well traveled and for the most part hired on a competitive basis. The Institute’s duties, according to Law 2660, of December 1st, 1965, were: 1. to elaborate and direct to the Executive branch a bill establishing Curitiba’s Urban Plan; 2. to promote studies and research of an integrated plan for the development of the municipality of Curitiba; 3. to judge bills and administrative measures that could impact the municipality’s development in all of its aspects; 4. to create conditions for implementation and continuity, which would allow a constant adaptation of sectoral and global plans to the dynamics of municipal development; 5. to make the local plan compatible to regional or state plan guidelines.

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IPPUC’s first bylaws, approved by Decree 1910/65, added other duties, such as : 6. preparation of studies aiming at the improve adaptation of municipal works to the Municipal Master Guiding Plan tax or administrative restrictions and incentives needed for the implementation of the Master Plan, and exploring the feasibility of sectoral programs; 7. the promotion of agreements with technical entities and universities for the training of professionals; 8. offering internships to university students; and 9. the execution of other activities linked to urban development. In 1966. Curitiba’s city council approved the City’s master plan prepared by IPPUC and in October of the following year, an agreement was ratified between the State of Paraná’s government and ten municipalities that were part of Curitiba’s metropolitan region. This resulted in the creation of the Metropolitan Council, of which IPPUC was a part, and which considered development issues over the entire urbanized region of greater Curitiba. IPPUC’s participation in this agreement allowed it prepare technical studies and program works related to integrated regional planning, in addition to coordinating works, projects, services, and activities of interest to the whole region. With a simple organizational structure, IPPUC was able to develop proposals and projects without problems of partisan political interference. Thus, by the end of 1967, Curitiba had created an agency not only engaged in the mechanics of urban growth but also able to take initiative on issues and practices that could affect the sustainability of development over a wide area. Directly linked to the mayor’s office with a status above municipal departments (“Secretários do Município”), IPPUC was capable of following and studying as well as providing for the implementation through project contracting of all of the major elements in the city’s growth process. Though not conceived as an institution dedicated to sustainability, IPPUC had in its founding terms of reference all the elements the institution needed to achieve sustainability (Oliveira 2001).

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Mechanisms of Success in Sustainability: Channeling Advice to the City
Though it moved through various phases – at first active, then quiet in the face of public reaction, then active again – IPPUC created a long record of contributions to various aspects of urban development in the city. Santoro (2001) and Oliveira (2001) see the early years in several distinct phases. An initial period that Oliveira calls “institutionalization” (1962-1966, see above) was followed by an incubation period (1965–70), at which time conflicts arose over vision and strategy of projects conceived by IPPUC on the one hand, and on the other, those developed by the municipal administration. During this period, in Oliveria’s words, IPPUC was “in the icebox,” its actions and activity on hold (Oliveria 2001: 99). During this period, IPPUC developed projects under its director Jaime Lerner. Beginning in 1970 with the appointment of Lerner as mayor, IPPUC launched its first important phase of implementation. Succeeding sections of this paper discuss four key phases in which IPPUC was active in the decades following its founding. The rough chronological order follows the evolution of thinking and trial and error concerning land use, transport, and social and environmental issues in Curitiba. Each section illustrates a modality of action and innovative solutions to problems that are common in fast-growing cities. 1. Establishing Rudiments of Urban Form: 1967-1972 The use of land and a special program for vehicles and pedestrian circulation became the focus of attention under Mayors Ivo Arzua and Jaime Lerner, with engineers José Portella and Cássio Tanigushi directing the Institute, respectively. IPPUC began to plan radical changes for the city. The key features of restructuring would be linear access routes radiating out from the city along which new residential and commercial establishments would be directed with the help of land use controls, zoning measures, and building regulations. One of the most difficult, but seminal proposals advanced by IPPUC was a large sidewalk mall in the middle of downtown, later to become Flower Street. The idea was to keep the block free from automobiles and reserved for pedestrians. Though common now, the idea of a pedestrian mall in the city center was unheard of in Brazil at that time. Initially, the IPPUC proposal aroused stiff opposition from commercial businesses in the city center, which felt that their success depended upon access by and parking spaces for private automobiles. In contrast, IPPUC and Lerner felt that the first step in gaining control over the automobile was the creation of a downtown pedestrian mall. Many meetings were required with the chamber of commerce and others before the technical arguments of IPPUC could persuade the chamber of commerce and others that the proposed

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closing of downtown streets made sense. The first element of the argument was that Flower Street was not to be an isolated project, but rather was part of a larger scheme to manage traffic flows in and out of the city. The IPPUC plan would divert traffic flow to parallel streets. Later on, one-way parallel routes were created for the traffic flows crossing Curitiba’s traditional downtown. In fact, according to Santoro, the transportation plan created “too many lanes for the circulation at that time” (Santoro 2001). “Fast routes” ran from neighborhoods to downtown, greatly facilitating access to the downtown area. Busses were given dedicated lanes; small curbs were built to help ward off intruding automobile traffic. Running parallel to them were single lanes that functioned as access ways for neighborhood traffic. Though the ideas were not complicated technically, developing the understanding and achieving consensus took IPPUC and the administration three years for the plan to become reality. Along with the technical innovations of IPPUC came a publicity campaign to educate the population about the need to use the public transportation system more often and to explain the emerging patterns of land use for commercial and real estate along the access into the city. IPPUC thus undertook to become its own advocate, taking part in, even defining, the terms of the public debate in the city. With these main components of the traffic management plan, the rudimentary elements of Latin America’s first rapid bus transit system were put in place. The dominance of the automobile was about to be broken in Curitiba. More important, a platform was established that enable much more elaborate and larger scale systems to be put in place in the following years. 2. Structuring the Transport System: 1972-1983 The next phase of development in IPPUC and the city of Curitiba is marked by three factors. The first is the appointment, by the governor, of two technicians as mayors—Jaime Lerner and Saul Ruiz—both of whom were familiar with and relied upon the planning, urban development, and expertise in implementation of IPPUC. Both retained the same director, Lubomir Ficinski. This continuity of thought and personnel helped to build out the land use and transportation system in Curitiba. The remaining factors helping to define this phase originated outside Curitiba. In 1973, the oil crisis brought a doubling of gasoline prices. The price shocks for Curitiba helped to strengthen

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the conviction of the city leadership to support extensive public transportation for efficiency and equity reasons. IPPUC would play a key role in meeting this challenge. Not long afterward (1975), Curitiba felt the effects of the second exogenous influence: the city became one of the beneficiaries of proceeds from a World Bank loan to improve public transit in cities of Brazil. Again IPPUC was called upon to play a critical role. These circumstances – new and experienced leadership together with new pressures and new resources – contributed to deepening and strengthening the land and transport achievements of the previous period. In particular, the second phase brought: • Conscientious integration of land use planning with density gradients matching road design and public transport, • Joint public-private operation, • Capacity-expanding measures (special buses, new connecting routes), and • Emphasis on equity and affordability (measures to keep costs down and ensure high-quality service to the poor and to the less-populated areas of the city). Integration of land use and public transport. IPPUC technicians began to develop a road scheme that took advantage of the basic premise of integrated road and land use. An express route for exclusive use of busses ran north and south forming the central axis between the “fast lanes” already developed. With 30 meter widths, the lanes provided ample volume for through traffic. At the same time, pedestrian and slower traffic was accommodated on parallel strips.
At the same time, a new land use plan was approved. It established building regulations that permitted construction of up to 22 times the areal size of the land between the “fast routes.” The master plan required that buildings facing streets of
DEDICATED BUS LINE ONE-WAY STREET

public transportation have a fixed percentage of their areas dedicated to commercial establishments. Streets crossing fast lines, construction was allowed up to 12 times the area of the land; with five meter setbacks. In this way a pyramid of land use density was being formed. With trial and error, IPPUC and other technicians determined that it was desirable to increase the density of built-up areas even further (Rabinovitch and Letimann, 1996; Santoro and Leitmann, 2004)

Other initiatives addressed parking and created a beltway around the city center to relieve pressure from traffic cutting through the downtown center merely to get to the other side of town.

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These home-grown solutions began to attract the attention of the state and federal governments, and this exposure enhanced the role and legitimacy given to IPPUC. A short time later, Curitiba received US$54 million as a part of proceeds from a World Bank loan. IPPUC was made the supervising agency for the money and was responsible for the presentation of projects to the federal transport authorities (EBTU). In the years that immediately followed, these proceeds allowed IPPUC and the city to accelerate projects that had already been started—for instance in road paving, public lighting, and transport terminals. As a consequence, Curitiba sprang forward relative to its own timetable and relative to other cities taking part in the EBTU World Bank urban transport project. In effect, IPPUC’s presence appeared to prove the value of the internal think tank.. With each expansion and improvement, it became possible to build on a new platform of innovations, in signaling, busses, and tariffs. IPPUC was instrumental in creating a traffic control center and planning and constructing more neighborhood terminals. With the help of foreign technicians, IPPUC’s technical department created a traffic control center, an electronically coordinated signaling system that transformed traffic lights into “green waves,” conveying speedier traffic flow. With the help of TV cameras and electronic scanners installed in the roadway at strategic places in the main intersections in town, computerized control allowed automatic traffic counting and regulation of traffic lights for special periods during the day.

One of the most important innovations was in bus fares. Partly due to the pressure of the oil crisis, IPPUC began work on a unified tariff scheme for public transport. In 1979, a system of single tariffs was established across the city, the Integrated Transportation Network (RIT). This innovation made it possible for operators of small bus lines, including feeder and transfer lines on the periphery where little money could be made, to stay in service. A cross-subsidy built into the integrated transportation network favored operators on smaller and less popular routes, while larger ones running bus routes in the more lucrative downtown areas could
still turn a profit.

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Details of transport planning in IPPUC. For more than 20 years, (1966 to 1988) transportation planning was handled in the Superintendency of Planning in IPPUC. For most of this period, the overall objective was the planning
Coordinating and Managing Public Works.
In March 1977 the municipality signed an agreement that drew upon IPPUC’s comparative advantage in data gathering and management to improve coordination of public works and services. IPPUC’s Data Processing Center together with other units developed a management system of public works on roads. Later they began to compile an urban infrastructure information system. The management and information systems were intended to increase the efficiency of the supervision process, improve production of reports, and streamline evaluation of contractors and cadastre information by tracking subterranean networks of water pipes, drainage and sewerage lines, underground wires, gas lines and other infrastructure. IPPUC created and maintained an up-to-date data-base of urban spaces. With the introduction of computers, IPPUC could authorize works almost immediately and inform contractors and state agencies about the subterranean networks existing in the section, thus avoiding accidental destruction and breakdowns. The data base grew to include bus routes in service, open markets, schools, parking lots, gas stations and hospitals.

of the public transit system, from large scale conception to routes, connections, and schedules. After land use, these detailed planning tasks were among the most important of the analytical (as opposed to works supervision) functions in IPPUC. The Municipal transit company (URBS) was responsible for regulatory issues and inspected all facets of the system. Bus service itself was provided by nine companies. In the beginning, even the location of stops as well as the extensions of routes proposed by the users was planned in the Superintendency of Planning, which with the advent of the integrated transport network in 1978, also took over the functions of tariff calculation.

3. From Broad Strategy to Contraction: Inflation and Social Issues 1983-1989 Beginning in the 1980s, Brazil was about to encounter two new and powerful currents of change. First, a protracted period of hyperinflation drove the cost of living up by thousands of percentage points per annum. Brazil’s macro economic performance, and particularly its efforts to control inflation, became all-consuming effort through the decade. Second, Brazil was entering a period of political and administrative decentralization, in which a new constitution and reforms of the state were to bring about popular election of mayors and new powers and prerogatives in planning, spending, and management for all of Brazil’s local governments. The first elections in this new regime were held in 1983. Despite the success of the city during the previous decades in managing growth and implementing many innovations, particularly in transport, the city elected two consecutive populist governments that took charge of the municipality through 1988. According to Santoro, this was a period marked by strong partisan political influences, and IPPUC, being identified with partisan influences not favored in the election, began to assume a protective stance. Partly as

Brazil was entering a period of political and administrative decentralization, in which a new constitution and other reforms were to bring about popular election of mayors

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an adaptive strategy, IPPUC shifted from its previous character of broad strategic view and strong technical profile. In keeping with the newly elected leadership of the city, IPPUC began
Social Innovations
IPPUC analysts were involved directly and indirectly in the creation of numerous innovations to solve typical urban problems. Besides the “Trash that isn’t Trash” program, several others programs helped to solve the problems of congestion and choking of downtown streets by street vendors. Others addressed issues of transport tokens and transportation for the handicapped. • Street Vendors. The problem of street vendors was at its peak in the mid 1980s. IPPUC participated in the organization of these small-scale (often called “informal sector”) merchants into an association, in which 600 people were registered. A visual communication program was launched to support a project to design and build 600 metal carts. These were attractively painted and covered with small awnings and placed in regulated parking lots in 200 corners in the downtown area. The carts were leased at low rates to the vendors, who themselves prevented new “informal” vendors form establishing themselves in the downtown area. • Transport Vouchers. In 1985, a compulsive transportation voucher, to be deducted from worker payrolls, was established by federal law. Curitiba was well prepared to implement this policy. Transportation vouchers in coins had already been created. These were sold beforehand and kept their value for public transit, in spite of constant increases in the cost of living. • Physically and mentally handicapped. All of the schools teaching handicapped students were registered with the city. Busses already going out of the regular routes, established a regular line for those schools, with public servants working as attendants in these buses in the home to school and school to home directions. Later, a special transfer terminal was established so that the distance traveled by these buses was reduced.

to explore innovative ways to address social issues. The rationale was to find ways to alleviate some of the harshest impacts of inflation on the poor. Under mayors Maurício Fruet and Roberto Requião, the Institute’s operational structure turned away from strategic planning and concentrated on more detailed technical services in order to address and solve the city’s problems. The larger structural and visionary ideas of IPPUC began to be ignored. Furthermore, IPPUC was downgraded, from a semi-autonomous agency directly linked to the mayor, to a typical municipal bureau (secretariat), on par with planning, public works, and engineering. Many foreign technicians left the Institute. It became more difficult to obtain data for its operations. During this period, shifts in political environment at the national level influenced the allocation of international financial assistance to other cities. Partly to preserve its technical and institutional integrity, and partly to align with the social concerns of the new govern-

ments, IPPUC turned its attention to social policies for the city. IPPUC had gathered very good baseline data on needs for schools, health clinics, and day care centers in each of seven homogeneous regions that had been identified by socio-economic and research units. In 1985, IPPUC participated in the census of Curitiba together with the Brazilian Institute of Statistics (IBGE). A new data management unit was created (SCITAN), and it mapped highly detailed information for every city block. Today, IPPUC’s data is the basis for cadastre registers (land ownership and value) for the municipality and an important input to the Brazilian Institute of Statistics (IBGE) for the national census on residential housing carried out every ten years. At about the same time, the structuring of neighborhood associations began to be encouraged and consolidated, and IPPUC began to deal directly with these associations. About 500

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neighborhood associations were organized, and IPPUC played a role in exploring or creating site-specific solutions in each case. For instance, about 50 day care centers and 25 health clinics were created in several areas of town. IPPUC’s technical units in social analysis began to work more closely with municipal bureaus of health, youth, and education. IPPUC also participated in planning for upgrading for several slums. The Superintendencies of Execution and Planning proposed and eventually implemented a program for the re-location of the needy population living near rivers and ravines to other parts of the municipality, using a temporary ownership period (in a program known as Programa Pró-Locar). About 300 families were relocated and several ravines were urbanized. Among the many social innovations generated by IPPUC during this period (see sidebar, previous page) the “Trash that isn’t Trash” program is one of the most notable. Squatter settlements in Curitiba, as in most cities of Latin America, form high density settlements in areas such as hillsides and flood plains. In these areas it is hard to use customary mechanized methods of solid waste removal. In the IPPUC program called “Trash that isn’t Trash,” a publicity and education campaign helped to persuade residents to separate their trash into organic and inorganic waste. The recyclable waste was collected by a private contractor once a week, and taken to a processing center owned by the city. The facility employed homeless people and recovering alcoholics to sort the trash into different types of materials. The trash-purchase scheme and the “Trash that isn’t Trash” program were linked. The proceeds from the sale of the recycled materials went to finance the purchase of surplus food from farmers. The food is given in exchange for trash (Biller 1994: 92). 4. Revival and New Powers. Surface Metro and Consolidation of the Social Sector:1989-1994 With the return of Jaime Lerner as mayor in 1989, IPPUC gained a new impetus from one its main protagonists and started not only a revival of IPPUC’s stature and innovation in the city, but also the projection outward to national and international influence. The return of Lerner meant also a return of familiar hands managing IPPUC, this time by Cássio Tanigushi, engineer. The two former colleagues formed a technical team, already twice named by the state and federal governments to create and execute the guidelines and basic works of Curitiba’s master plan. The technical strength built up over the previous period in socio-demographic and geographic data was extended, and Lerner focused once again on solving emerging problems in both social development and transport. With smoother political relationships with the state, Lerner was able to engineer a return to IPPUC of strategic control over public transportation. Equally important was the re-engagement by IPPUC in decision making in spending in the city. Together with the other bureaus, IPPUC set the priorities for the US$20 million in annual capital investment.

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Increase in traffic over the previous decade had outgrown the innovative solutions from earlier periods. The main arteries had become overloaded, and because the system was operating at its capacity, long lines and traffic jams were forming within the central beltway and at the main terminals in town during the morning and evening rush hours. Various elements of the solution involved creative thinking and innovation on the part of IPPUC. One of the most notable innovations was the tube station. Shaped like a long cylinder (see illustration), the station is an above-grade loading platform where people embark and disembark at level equal to the bus carriage, much like a metro station. Bus fares are purchased in advance inside the tube. These two innovations – level of entry and pre-paid fares – greatly accelerate the transit time of bus stops. A second innovation, small express busses (“ligeirinhos”) were added on fast routes with fewer stops. The combination of these changes helped solved the problems of traffic jams. Another improvement was the addition of bi-articulated buses, introduced on the heavier north-south routes. The articulated busses have a larger capacity (about 270 passengers per bus), allowing up to 11,000 passengers per hour in one direction during rush hour. Step by step, with critical inputs by IPPUC, a new and innovative form of public rapid transit was invented in Curitiba and is being replicated in many cities in Latin America and elsewhere. In effect, the Curitiba system is a bus system that runs on the surface in a way similar to metro rail systems underground. Dedicated lanes and structural axes were formed in the 1970s, data on ridership, social needs, and costs, along with integrated controls, were added in the 1980s, and larger and faster vehicles (like the tri-articulated buses shown in the graphic) with loading stations and low transaction times complemented the system in the early 1990s. IPPUC technical and policy analysts played important roles every step of the way, even during periods of political disfavor. Meanwhile IPPUC remained active in social areas and environmental planning. IPPUC’s social research and planning department extended its work with municipal health clinic system, setting up small clinics in populous neighborhoods of the city. They function 24 hours a day and help alleviate pressures on traditional city hospitals. IPPUC also played a role in the planning and construction of day care centers and centers for extending learning hours in elementary education.

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Flood Control and Parks

The return of favorable political relations with the state and federal governments enhanced Curitiba’s access to state programs. The city took advantage of these circumstances to consolidate flood control, a challenge that had been with the city since the 1950s. With the help of another international loan from the World Bank, Curitiba was able to solve the problems of low-lying valleys and the flood areas of the municipality. Several parks were established, the two larger ones measuring 630,000 m2; this time they were built closer to the housing projects of the periphery, in green preserved areas. The amount of this loan is about
Curitiba is the birthplace of the Iguacu River, which flows into the Parana River at the border between Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. The Iguacu’s northern section is the site of numerous springs that are vital for Curitiba’s water supply. Many smaller tributaries of the Iguacu also cut through Curitiba. When the city was small, the rise of these rivers during the rainy season was uneventful because a wide floodplain handled the floods. Starting in the 1950s, the city’s horizontal expansion encroached on this floodplain and caused severe flooding problems. Engineering solutions to this problem were unsuccessful because channeling the rivers simply transferred the floods to other areas. City authorities realized that it was necessary to recover the floodplain. A concerted effort to expropriate areas along the courses of the rivers and build small dams led to the creation of large parks and lakes that today are Curitiba’s main recreational sites. Concurrently, new land use regulations regarding the division of land into plots for housing development prohibit the construction of streets and buildings in strips subject to flooding. Another park (the Passauna Park) was also created to protect a river and its system of springs that supply one-third of Curitiba’s water. The area was declared an “environmental protection area” under legislation that grants tax incentives for preservation of forest cover. Further, the law allows only up to 30 percent of the area to be used for construction. The choice of sites and the building parameters are subject to district approval. Similarly, new housing developments in non-drainage areas must dedicate 35 percent of the land area to the public domain for environmental purposes. The overall result is a city with one of the highest ratios of green areas per capita (50 square meters per inhabitant) among Western cities, providing its citizens ample recreational and cultural sites, more than 140 km of bicycle paths, neighborhood parks, and in-city forest reserves. Source Biller, 1994

US$ 30 million; besides executing the projects, IPPUC charged 5 percent for the management of the program. With the expansion of park and flood control areas, Curitiba increased green space per capita by a factor of 10, giving the city claim to being “an ecological city.” Oliveira (2001) challenges this claim, suggesting that environmental sustainability of parkland, solid waste, and transport were more of a packaged afterthought than an explicit objective driving these programs. Whether premeditated or not, the progress and innovative solutions to typical urban problems produced results that are studied and replicated in many cities in Latin America. The administrative and organizational arrangements in the late 1990s bear a strong resemblance to the key features of IPPUC when it was founded. The research, land use and transport planning, data and analysis, project implementation, and public communications units appear in the organizational graphic (following page).

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Oganization of Modern-Day IPPUC

6.3

10
10.1

6.2 5.2 5.1 6.1

5
4.1 1.5

6
1.1

7.1

7
1.2

4
1.4 3.1

1.3

1
2
2.1 2.2

8

8.1

3

9
9.1

1

President Dir. of Information and Database Dir. for Historically Significant Buildings Dir. of Administration and Finance Dir. of Strategic Planning Dir. of Projects Dir. of Urban Development Dir. of Instituntional Relations Dir. of International Relations Dir. for the City University

2

3

4

5

2.3

6

7

8

9

2.4

10

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National and International Influences.

The achievements of IPPUC and Curitiba began to attract national and international attention in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Among other things, they showed how planning could be effectively integrated across administrative and conceptual boundaries with effective results. ICLEI has documented the innovative management of Curitiba, and the case has been written up in numerous journals and books (Santoro and Leitmann 2004, MacLeod, 2002; Walljasper, 2001; Ravazzani and Afgani 1999). Tlaiye and Biller (1994) saw IPPUC as an example of a home-grown institution that could help correct imperfections in the market that cause environmental damage. In their terms, government environmental institutions work among multiple agents, imperfect information, and across sectoral and administrative boundaries. Using both corrective and preventive strategies, and working with both command and control or market-based incentives, institutions like IPPUC are able to guarantee distribution of rights, regulate externalities, and achieve optimal use of resources. Beginning in the 1990s, the state of Parana upgraded its agency for municipal assistance, FAMEPAR, under the leadership that once launched IPPUC in Curitiba. Now as governor, Jaime Lerner appointed Lubomir Ficinski to head up the agency. It in turn began to facilitate the financing and development of local governments with an approach to planning, land use, and transport similar to the one pioneered in Curitiba. FAMEPAR managed one of the most successful state-wide programs in municipal development in the World Bank’s portfolio. According to Lowry (2002), IPPUC’s political and institutional capital was indispensable in running programs like FAMEPAR at the state level in later years (Lowry 2002). In 1992, the Curitiba Resolution was one of the founding documents of Rio Habitat Conference. That meeting, and the Local Agenda 21 that emanated from it, have set the stage for local government action in sustainable urban development for the past two decades.

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Conclusions Factors in the Feasibility of an Urban Think Tank
What factors noticed in the course of this analysis might bear on the feasibility of establishing an urban think tank? Many factors, both internal and external to IPPUC, help to explain its origins, its institutional character, and likelihood of replicability. External factors have also played an extremely important role in influencing the direction, the pace, and the opportunities for IPPUC to survive and grow. 1. Origins Planning activities in Curitiba, like IPPUC itself, were founded under circumstances that are not always common in developing world. As often with cases of innovation and leadership, the triggering conditions were a sense of crisis – of health care, fiscal pressure, or natural calamity (Campbell and Fuhr 2004). Leaders in Curitiba were influenced to some degree by the rapidity of growth, the press of congestion, and the recurrent issue of flooding. Many key leaders had faith in urban planning as a solution to these problems. In Brazil and much of Latin America in the 1960s, following extremely high rates of urban growth, rates far higher than are seen in most cities in the coming decades, planning was an accepted activity and even a promise of relief if not salvation. These same circumstances may not be so readily apparent today. In Latin America for instance, many urbanists are now accustomed to the consequences of past rapid urban growth, meaning disjointed and disordered cities and aging infrastructure. In China, the speed of growth is not of demand in population movements as much as it is from supply of infrastructure. These circumstances put more emphasis on the need to rein in the private sector, and particularly public private arrangements in land conversion, and guide them more effectively to public uses. But whether pressure is demographic or of exuberant infrastructure, one lesson from Curitiba is that wide recognition of a problem needs to be felt across a spectrum of political and social domains. The Setting and Context Curitiba’s capacity to innovate has been assisted by wise planning and institutional devel¬opment. It has also been influenced by political continuity and the ability to forge cross-jurisdictional relations. During the era of action, the city benefited from a suc¬ces¬sion of mayors, beginning with Jaime Lerner in 1971, who consolidated, maintained, and added to key innovations.

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The relationship between the city and other levels of govern¬ment has also changed over time and influenced Curitiba’s approach to urban development. The military dictatorship from 1964 to 1979 had a telling effect on IPPUC at its formation. Curitiba responded by developing creative and self-financing programs so that it could gradually implement its own ideas – particularly those in land use and transport – without assistance from higher levels of govern¬ment. In general, the metropolitan level of government in Brazil failed to bridge the horizontal gaps between local mayors, and the vertical distance between mayors and state governments. Curitiba was an exception because of demographic and economic advantages: Curitiba’s population was more than twice that of all other metropolitan muni¬cipalities combined, and its status as the state capital lent it economic weight. Because of these advantages, Curitiba has managed to achieve a higher degree of coordination with neighboring municipalities than the Brazilian norm. 2. Internal and External Factors Beyond the contextual factors that helped to shape the founding of IPPUC, a variety of internal and external factors exerted influence on the pace and direction of its growth over the decades. Many similar factors could play a role in similar agencies in the future. Internal structure. IPPUC’s internal structure and mandate were critical factors in its success, especially in the early years when the institute was attempting to meet a challenge of legitimacy and technical competence. The degrees of functional autonomy provided some insulation from political interference in connection with choice of issues and scope of intervention. Fortunately for Curitiba, many of the outcomes related to these issues were favorable, and to some degree, management control by the governing council, with broad based linkages to stakeholders, helped to maintain its autonomy. Independence in internal organization offered IPPUC advantages in personnel staffing at above public sector salaries on a competitive basis. This flexibility must be counted as a singular factor of importance in the ability of the agency to conduct is work effectively. Experts were hired representing many nationalities and large accumulated experience from travel abroad. Also, IPPUC could ramp up manpower quickly when necessary. These policies are unusual by standards of urban agencies in Latin America IPPUC was designed to cover a wide scope of work, ranging from strategic planning to project implementation and supervision, and to serve as the coordinating agency in a multi-jurisdic-

Population pressures, flooding, traffic congestion, and the oil crisis all tested IPPUC’s capacity to help the city.

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tional environment. This reach across bureaucratic and governmental boundaries provided the one dimension of strategic growth that set IPPUC apart from a typical planning unit. IPPUC did not have the scope of vision held by, say the development agencies in Bilbao or London. IPPUC’s view has been tempered by practical, operational considerations. Another of IPPUC’s comparative advantages was its ability to integrate the ideas from many parts of government and to provide analysis quickly and objectively. Community education and publicity campaigns—with high tech graphics and presentational facilities—helped IPPUC explain and sell its ideas both to city as well as metropolitan stakeholders and government officials at all levels. Because the basics of data gathering and management seem so fundamental, they are often overlooked in the search for success in planning and management of cities in the developing world. This factor, basic information concerning demographics, income, economic fundamentals, and environmental quality, should not be overlooked in establishing criteria for replicability of IPPUC. Gathering and handling basic socio economic data helped IPPUC become partner with national authorities in housing census, in transport vouchers, and in scoping out the dimensions of programs and costs. IPPUC’s data-base on infrastructure deserves greater scrutiny. External factors. Twists and turns of political and technological change brought both challenges as well as opportunity to IPPUC, and in both kinds of circumstances, these helped to reinforce the legitimacy of the institution. Population pressures, flooding, traffic congestion, and the oil crisis all tested IPPUC’s capacity to help the city. For the most part, IPPUC met the tests. Each challenge became a proving ground for IPPUC. In a similar way, when new resources became available from outside the city, for instance through the national government or the World Bank, IPPUC was ready to take advantage quickly. IPPUC proved able also to convert its investment in basic data to advantage in diagnostic work, speeding implementation of transport services for the disadvantaged, and to facilitate the national housing census, all examples of proving institutional effectiveness to higher levels of government. In each of these instances, IPPUC used the opportunity to rise above other cities taking part in the same or similar programs, and in so doing, reaffirmed its value to the city. The success of IPPUC is due in some part also to its longevity, and this in turn depended importantly on individuals politicians who believed in the institution and who appeared and reappeared to help sustain it. Jaime Lerner, Casio Tanagushci, and Lubomir Ficinski all helped create and reinforce the institution. Conversely, on some occasions, the Institute was obliged to shift course as part of adaptive strategy of survival, for instance with the election of populist governments.

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Time Line of IPPUC in Curitiba

1943 1965 1966 1967 1972 1977 1978

Agache Plan created IPPUC Created Master plan approved Creation of pedestrian mall in city center Law extends IPPUC remit to include continuous planning IPPUC helps to coordinate interdepartmental procedures Integrated transport network devised World Bank agreement on loan signed by mayor

1978-1982 1981 1982 1983 1985

Neighborhood bus terminals created Management system developed to track public works Change of political administration IPPUC downgraded to municipal department objectives shifted to social concerns IPPUC participates in the national census for the city Transportation vouchers introduced

1987 1988 1989 1992 1996-1997 2000

Further personnel reforms; technicians begin to leave IPPUC becomes advisory arm of the office of mayor Lerner elected to office of mayor Curitiba Resolution, one of founding documents for Agenda 21 of UN Revitalization of historic quarter in city Intensification of participation of public and linking city to citizen

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Bibliography

Campbell, Tim 2006 “Learning Cities: Acquiring Knowledge, Intelligence, and Identity in Complex Systems.” Processed. Urban Age Institute. Campbell, T and H. Fuhr 2004 Leadership and Innovation in Subnational Government: Case Studies from Latin America. World Bank Institute Development Series. Washington, DC: World Bank. 450 p.

Ranhagen, Ulf and Sara Trobeck, 1998 “Physical planning and Sustainable Urban Transport: A Comparative Analysis of Four International Cities” FFNS Arkitekter. Processed. Stockholm. Swedish International Development Agency. Ravazzani, Carlos and Jose Paulo Afgani 1999 Curitiba. A capital ecologica. Curitiba: Natugraf Ltda.. Santoro, Roberto 2001.

HORIZON Solutions Site, 2003 “Efficient transportation for successful urban planning in Curitiba.” Published as Case study. IPPUC Website, 2005 http://www.ippuc.org.br/ippuc/index. “Criacao do IPPUC.” Lowry, Ira S. 2002 Municipal Development in Parana: Policies and Programs, 1981-2001. Curitiba: Paranacidade. pp. 202 MacLeod, Kirsteen 2002 “Orienting Urban Planning to Sustainability in Curitiba, Brazil”, Local Strategies for Accelerating Sustainability: Case Studies of Local Government Success, International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI), retrieved on Oct 13, 2005 http://www3.iclei.org/localstrategies/summary/curitiba2.html (saved) Oliveira, Marcio de 2001 “A trajetória do discurso ambiental em Curitiba (1960-2000).” in Revista de Sociología e Politica 16:.97-106. ISSN 0104-4478. Rabinovitch, J and Leitmann, J. 1996 “Urban Planning in Curitiba, A Brazilian City Challenges Conventional Wisdom and Relies on Low Technology to Improve the Quality of Urban Life.” Scientific American 274 (3): 26-49.

“IPPUC—Curitiba’s Institute of Research and Urban Planning.” Paper prepared for Leadership and Innovation Project. Processed. Latin America and the Caribbean Region. World Bank. Santoro, Roberto and Josef Leitmann 2004 “Innovative Urban Transport in Curitiba, Brazil.” Pp. 235-276 in Campbell, T and H Fuhr, eds Leadership and Innovation in Subnational government. Case Studies from Latin America. WBI Devleopment Studies. Washington, DC: World Bank Institute Tlaiye, Laura and Dan Biller, 1994 “Successful Environmental Institutions: Lessons from Colombia and Brazil” Dissemination Note No. 12. Environmental Unit. Latin America Technical Department. World Bank: Washington, DC. Walljasper, Jay 2001 “Seven Urban Wonders: Enlightened Cities Around the World,” in Utne Reader, Nov.-Dec. 2001. Retrieved on November 11, 2005 http://www.utne. com/pub/2001_108/features/2458-1.html

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