The Friday File: Pay Attention to the Zebra in the Streets in Bolivia

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The Atlantic Monthly describes the innovative attempts of the City of La Paz Bolivia in  changing driver behaviour in the streets, slowing traffic, and helping pedestrians survive. The “cebritas” program is a hybrid to that first introduced in the 1990’s in Bogota where mimes were sent out on the street to tease and admonish drivers breaking the rules.

La Paz is the highest capital city in the world, and decided to do things a bit differently. They have 265 local volunteers dressed in full-body zebra costumes who nudge “people toward good behavior. “On a lot of busy corners you will have police directing traffic, but their method of doing it is whistling at you, yelling at you, pulling you over, giving you a ticket,” says Derren Patterson, an American who owns a walking-tour agency in La Paz. “Whereas the way the zebras do it, if a car stops in…

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