Colombia, often known as a dangerous, drug ridden, unstable country. However, cities such as Bogota and Medellin are coming up with creative solutions to combat common urban issues. Medellin, Colombia was awarded the 2012 Sustainable Transport Award after implementing several new systems including public bicycle system and a ridesharing program. However, neither of these have gained as much attention as the 1,300 foot escalator connecting Medellin’s poorest slum to the city center. This may seem like simply a transportation solution, but data has shown these new implementations have caused a drop in crime rates and were originally designed with this in mind. The connection of slum to city was designed to invoke safety and a sense of pride and belonging. Residents can now feel as if they are being recognized and considered a part of the city.
Several other modes of transportation such as lifts and cable cars are also helping connect the people of the “Comunas” to the center. Public services such as schools, libraries, or medical centers are continuing to pop-up around the outskirts of the city due to this new investment in transportation.
These new innovations have helped boost economy, connect the city, and lower crime rates all together. Medellin is pleased with the turnout and this will drive them to continually move towards more sustainable systems that will lead to further progress as a more unified city.