ColombiaOne.comColombia newsBogota and Washington, DC Mayors Plan a Global City Network

Bogota and Washington, DC Mayors Plan a Global City Network

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Bogota Washington Mayors
The mayors of Bogota and Washington D.C. plan to create a global network of cities to address common issues – Credit: Mayor’s Office of Bogota

The mayors of Bogota and Washington, DC in the United States, are planning the creation of a global network of cities to work together on issues of common interest. This initiative was the central point of the meeting held on May 13 between the mayor of Bogota, Carlos Fernando Galan, and the head of the US capital, Muriel Bowser.

In addition to the possibility of establishing the global network of cities, they discussed security, migration and housing. Galan was in DC to attend the Earth Conference, organized by the World Bank, to address the challenges facing the Colombian capital amid the climate crisis.

Global network of cities, plan of the mayors of Bogota and Washington

The idea of the global network of cities aims to pool efforts among local governments accross the Americas to tackle issues affecting cities. The objective is to work together and, according to the mayor of Bogota, “learn from each other’s experiences”.

One of the areas where this alliance can play a more collaborative role is in environmental issues. In this sense, Galan linked his visit to the mayor of Washington, DC with his participation in the Earth Conference. Currently, the Colombian capital is experiencing restrictions in the supply of drinking water due to low reservoirs levels.

Morevover, the decontamination of rivers and waste treatment are crucial factors for large cities. Currently, Bogota has about nine million inhabitants in its urban area, generating a significant amount of daily waste that must be treated to minimize environmental impact.

Security and access to housing are other issues affecting most cities. In Bogota, although official information indicates that insecurity has dropped in recent months to levels seen ten years ago, it remains a significant concern for citizens. Access to housing, both for nationals and for the significant Venezuelan migrant population, is also high on the political agenda.

Bogota Washington Mayors
Migration and access to housing are shared problems in large cities – Credit: A.P. / Colombia One

Mayor Galan at the Earth Conference

Mayor Galan participated in a panel with Vicky Tauli-Corpuz, director of Tebtebba, an indigenous rights NGO in the Philippines, and Mary Tegavota, National Registrar of Customary Lands of the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Survey of the Solomon Islands, where he discussed the challenges of urban planning and development in the face of climate change.

In that forum, the mayor of Bogota presented his plans for the coming years aimed at urban revitalization, housing in central areas, infrastructure and transportation systems and a safe and revitalized public space, with the goal of “talking about Bogota as a sustainable city”.

The main objective of the trip was to highlight the issue of water care on the international agenda, to seek international support and cooperation for the development of infrastructure projects, such as the Canoas WWTP (a key project within the decontamination program of the Bogota River) and various initiatives aimed at youth, as well as to promote and increase U.S. investment in the city.

During the conference the mayor shared the environmental problems currently facing the capital and how one of the five strategic objectives of the District Development Plan “Bogota Walk Safely (Bogota Camina Segura)” is to organize the territory and advance in climate action.

Bogota Washington Mayors
The Mayor of Bogota participated in the Earth Conference, organized by the World Bank – Credit: X.com / @CarlosFGalan

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