Past Initiative News

World Car Free Day (History)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Worldwide Carfree Day started in the 90s as a response to the excessive increase of cars that were harmful to our habitats, health, and general well being of the planet.

As a sign of solidarity, all citizens are invited to participate in this global movement by leaving their cars at home on Sunday, and instead using non-motorized forms of transportation. Bikes, rollerblades, skateboards, or simply walking are all encouraged as pollution free forms of transportation that are environmental friendly.

This year, World Car Free Day will be celebrated on the 22 of September, though some countries devote the entire week to this important topic.


After the petroleum crisis of 1973, the first ideas started to surface as to how to discourage car use and promote more efficient uses of transportation. However, it was not until October 1994 that the first car free days are organized.

The cities to take the first initiative in the World Car Free Day were Reykjavik, Iceland, La Rochelle, France, and Bath, UK. In 1997, the United Kingdom was also the first country to organize a car free day as a nationwide campaign.

In 2000, the European Commission constituted Car Free Day as a European Initiative. That same year, it became a worldwide day and in Europe, activities even stretch all week long.

This 22 of September, la Red Ambiental de Movilidad Urbana, ACONVIVIR, and Chepecletas invite everyone to participate in the celebration. See the Facebook event.

Join one of the movement: Parque Nacional, San Jose, Costa Rica. Event starts at 8:30 am.