No smartphone? No problem. He has a better idea for transit.


From autonomous vehicles to electric bikeshares: The future of transport is coming at us fast.

Urban planner Alvaro Sanchez is ensuring that this future doesn’t leave low-income people behind.

New scooter-rental and ride-hailing services require a credit card and a smartphone, putting them out of reach for some. So Sanchez and his team created a “mobility-equity framework” for cities developing new transport plans that takes into account local needs and priorities. In San Francisco, for example, they encouraged bikeshare and scooter companies to invest in mass-transit infrastructure and to accept payment methods like smart cards that can be purchased at a drugstore.

In part because of his experience as a first-generation immigrant, Sanchez believes that economic and environmental justice go hand in hand: “We’re addressing poverty and pollution at the same time.”