Federal, state and municipal authorities in Rio de Janeiro are trying to reverse a fall in the number of foreign tourists who visit the city and to preserve its position as Brazil's leading visitor center.
The fact that Rio will be the host of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, known as the Earth Summit, from June 3 to 15, has also encouraged various projects to improve the city's tourism infrastructure.
Security improvements are being made in all main tourist areas, with new police cars, small police stations and a greater police presence on the beaches and streets of Copacabana, Ipanema and Leblon.
A 12-mile freeway linking the airport and downtown Rio is being built, and 30 miles of beachfront sidewalk are being landscaped to include jogging and bicycle tracks, regulated concession stands and public facilities. Efforts are also being made to clean up the polluted waters of Guanabara Bay.