Cable Cars as Urban Public Transport in Medellin

How can cities grow in ways that promote social inclusion? The city of Medellín, Colombia, built a cable car system to provide a new type of public transport that connected poorer people, living in rugged areas, to Medellin's public transport system.  The cable car system, Metrocable, was part of an integrated investment in new public transport and neighbourhood infrastructure. …

Eigg Heritage Trust – Reshaping Land Ownership in Scotland

How can people organise to gain control of the place in which they live? The Scottish Ilse of Eigg replaced its historic semi-feudal system of land ownership, in which residents were tenants of an absentee laird (a large landowner) with a new model community based ownership. Eigg is one of the Scottish Inner Hebrides.  In 1997, the island was bought from its absentee landlord for …

Cyclovia

Cyclovia is an institutionalised event in Bogota where each Sunday and public holiday over 100 km of roadway are closed to car traffic for seven hours to create a ciclovia (“cycling way”) for cyclists, skaters, runners and walkers.  On some Sundays, as many as a million and a half people, or about 20% of Bogota, use Ciclovia …

Restoration of Cheonggyecheon River

How can urban cities be renovated to provide opportunities for their residents to reconnect to nature?  Cheonggyecheon river  restoration project in Seoul replaced a highway with urban green spaces and a highly engineered river.  The project opened in 2005 and has become popular place for people to visit in Seoul. The restoration of the Cheonggyecheon aimed to provide …

Bogota’s CicloRuta

How can government investments in infrastructure projects help trigger good sustainable change? How can we overcome our lock-in to fossil-fuel intensive transport systems? Bogotá is the largest city of Colombia with a population of 7 million.  Since the 1990s it has undergone a transformation from being know for its drug violence to its sustainability initiatives, many which have …

Indian Bend Wash – Resilient Safe Fail Urban Green Infrastructure

How can infrastructure protect urban areas from extreme weather, while providing other benefits when weather is non-extreme? Indian Bend Wash in Scottsdale Arizona is a 17 km greenbelt that runs through the Phoenix metropolitan area in the SouthWest United States.  It is "green infrastructure" designed to provide both flood protection and recreation. Indian Bend Wash is a historic …

Gardening the Sahel

by Lea Billen & Deborah Goffner Can multiplying small-scale “re-greening” in the form of women-run communal fruit and vegetable gardens make a difference for local populations in the Sahel? The Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative (GGW) is a Pan-African project consisting of a contiguous series of landscape-scale interventions designed to …