For four glorious hours this past Sunday, October 2, the capital of Brunei was car-free for the first time this year. The experiment is part of the government’s “Bandarku Ceria” (My Happy City) program to turn Bandar Seri Begawan into an urban park.
Officials transformed the city's center into a large park where bicycles and joggers replaced the cars. The government encouraged families to conduct outdoor activities, and invited small entrepreneurs to sell products in the streets. Even artists were seen exhibiting their work during the first car-free day in 2016.
Tourism officials also offered a “heritage-selfie” walking tour as part of the campaign to increase public awareness about the city’s historical sites.
Bandar Seri Begawan’s municipal department explained that the car-free day “aims to promote a healthy lifestyle and reduce the city's carbon footprint.”
Inspired by the success of the event, officials said the program will be repeated every week to encourage more residents to adopt a healthier and cleaner lifestyle
The weekly event can be monitored through these social media hashtags: #carfreesundaybn and #bandarkuceria.
— asp (@aiddisyafi) October 2, 2016
— ziäh (@haziahsn) October 2, 2016
Here are just some of the scenes in the capital from Sunday’s car-free day: