Interior view of the clock at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris

What are 15-minute cities?

One step from everything

The concept of the 15-minute city has gained popularity in urban planning and has been adopted by several cities around the world. This approach is gaining relevance as a response to the challenges facing urban areas today, especially in the context of the energy transition.

Rapid urbanization, the increase in traffic congestion, and environmental concerns have driven the search for solutions that transform our cities into more sustainable and habitable places for their residents.


15-minute cities: what they are, benefits, and examples

The 15-minute city concept aims to have stores, schools, parks, and workplaces located within a 15-minute accessible walking or biking distance from anywhere in the city.

The 15-minute city concepts, introduced in 2016 by the urban planner Carlos Moreno, proposes a vision of urban planning that prioritizes proximity and accessibility to essential services. This approach has a clear purpose: to reduce dependence on automobiles by encouraging more sustainable alternatives, such as the use of renewable fuels, with the aim of improving the quality of life of residents and promoting environmental sustainability.

At the heart of this idea lies the creation of denser and more functional urban environments, where people can satisfy most of their daily needs without the need for extensive commuting. This approach not only helps to reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but also encourages social interaction and physical activity, promoting a healthier and more connected lifestyle within the urban community.

What are the characteristics of 15-minute cities?

15-minute cities are characterized by a number of key elements designed to improve the quality of life for their residents. These elements may vary by location and city-specific planning, but generally include:

  1. Proximity to services
    In a fifteen-minute city most essential services, such as stores, schools, parks, health care facilities, and workplaces, are located within a 15-minute walk or bike ride from any point in the city.

  2. Population density
    These cities tend to have a higher population density compared to more dispersed urban areas. This facilitates the creation of an efficient public transportation infrastructure and a greater supply of services.

  3. Infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists
    Pedestrian streets and bicycle lanes are designed to promote sustainable and safe mobility, encouraging people to walk or use bicycles as a means of transportation.

  4. Efficient public transport
    15-minute cities often invest in efficient and accessible public transport systems. Such as streetcars, buses, and trains, to quickly connect different parts of the city.

  5. Promotion of green spaces
    Priority is given to the creation and preservation of green spaces, parks, and recreational areas accessible to all residents.

  6. Improved social life
    The proximity of services and public spaces promotes social interaction and a sense of community among residents.

  7. Environmental sustainability
    The use of renewable fuels is fundamental to promoting environmental sustainability. These resources come from circular sources, such as non-edible organic waste, renewable hydrogen, and CO2, which minimizes the environmental impact.

Benefits of chrono-urbanism

Chrono-urbanism is an urban planning approach that focuses on time as a key element in urban life. It seeks to design cities and spaces that optimize residents' time management, reducing long commutes and promoting greater efficiency in the use of time.

In many respects, chrono-urbanism shares similarities with the 15-minute law. Both focus on making cities more livable and people-centered by reducing travel times and improving quality of life.

Examples of 15-minute cities

Many cities are adopting this approach to improve the quality of life of their residents and promote urban sustainability. Some examples of sustainable cities that have adopted similar principles or are working on their implementation are:

Koiki, an efficient and environmentally friendly business model



In this context, projects such as Koiki are playing a crucial role.

Koiki is a social enterprise with a network for the sustainable distribution of last mile parcel delivery on foot, by bicycle, or in eco-efficient vehicles that generates a triple impact: economic, social, and environmental. This initiative contributes to sustainable mobility by reducing air pollution, traffic congestion, and noise levels, improving the quality of life in cities, and actively promotes the generation of employment opportunities for vulnerable and hard-to-employ groups, including people with disabilities. This combination of environmental and social sustainability exemplifies the commitment of 15-minute neighborhoods to address urban challenges in a holistic manner.