Jill Langlois – The Global Post, 07/11/2012
SAO PAULO, Brazil — This business hub, South America’s largest city, is usually bustling from dawn until dusk. But on a recent Wednesday morning, Sao Paulo ground to a halt.
Subway and train workers, disgruntled about poor wages and benefits, had gone on strike, leaving more than 4.8 million commuters without a ride. Buses still made the rounds, but these are packed on normal days. They didn’t help much, with rush-hour traffic in the maze-like city at a standstill. A usual hour-and-a-half journey across town took three hours.
But Sao Paulo isn’t the problem. Brazil’s population and economic growth have pushed it to the brink. Whether by road, rail or air, the country is unprepared to handle rising transport demand. Now, the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games approaching, host country Brazil’s transportation revamps are more pressing than ever.