What is Transit Oriented Development (TOD), and why is it an important development strategy for the Global South?

The TOD Resource is an interactive website created by the Urban Development team at the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, bringing together resources developed by the WRI/EMBARQ family around the world as well as other experts. Designed to be a “one stop shop” to find information about TOD, this website serves as an educational tool to inform readers about inclusive transit-oriented development, including all different aspects (institutional, financial, design, legal) for a policy maker, local government official, or interested party seeking a first approximation to the concept of TOD in the context of the Global South. Through a multi-pronged approach, the TOD Resource seeks to fill the gap in literature, build capacity, and become a trusted and robust resource on TOD for cities in developing countries.

Why TOD for Cities?

Transit-oriented development (TOD) has re-emerged as an integrated approach to planning that, when holistically executed, can address many of the concerns that today’s cities face. TOD is a strategy used primarily by local governments and city planning agencies to achieve walkable, mixed-use, and compact urban areas, serviced by high quality mass transit systems, that offer a variety of services, amenities, and job opportunities to community residents. Cities in developing countries, unable to afford to replicate the mistakes of motorization and urban sprawl, can benefit tremendously from development that incorporates the major principles of TOD. World Resources Institute Ross Center for Sustainable Cities

WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities works to make urban sustainability a reality. Global research and on-the-ground experience in Brazil, China, India, Mexico, Turkey and the United States combine to spur action that improves life for millions of people.

Based on longstanding global and local experience in urban planning and mobility, WRI Sustainable Cities uses proven solutions and action-oriented tools to increase building and energy efficiency, manage water risk, encourage effective governance and make the fast-growing urban environment more resilient to new challenges.

Aiming to influence 200 cities with unique research and tools, WRI Sustainable Cities focuses on a deep cross-sector approach in four megacities on two continents, and targeted assistance to 30 more urban areas, bringing economic, environmental and social benefits to people in cities around the globe.

We would like to acknowledge the support of

Stephen M. Ross is the Chairman and Founder of Related Companies, and a dedicated WRI Board member. He has long been passionate about city-building and believes that well-designed cities can transform how people live by creating conditions where all people can thrive and innovation can take hold. Stephen M. Ross's bio

Shell Foundation’s mission is to develop, scale up, and promote enterprise-based solutions to challenges arising from the impacts of energy and globalization on poverty and the environment. Shell Foundation provided seed funding that established EMBARQ in 2002 and remains a continuing supporter of the sustainable urban mobility work. Shell Foundation's website