City Inspirations


With 80% of the population expected to inhabit cities by 2050, governments may find ideas for reforms in examples of urban transformations elsewhere. This piece looks to Colombia, whose story of “political metamorphosis” is told in Bogota Change, part of the Cities on Speed film series. At the center of the story are two successive “unorthodox” mayors of Bogotá, Antanas Mockus and Enrique Peñalosa:

“By the end of their two tenures their complementary measures saw homicide drop by 50 percent, traffic by 25 percent, and traffic fatalities by 50 percent—and brought electricity, running water, and a sewage system to all households. Twenty years later, their unique and extraordinary vision remains an inspiring model at a time when creative solutions are so desperately needed.”

Lisa Dusenbery is the former managing editor of The Rumpus. More from this author →