COLOMBIA: Restoring Bogotá’s Waterscapes


Berkeley professor René Davids on efforts in the Colombian capital to reclaim and renew the city's waterscapes.

Settled between the agriculturally fertile savannah and the foothills of the Cerros Orientales and within walking distance of important resources, Bogotá’s exceptional location was paradoxically also its undoing; for 450 years, citizens used the trees of the Cerros Orientales for energy and construction, eroding the hillsides and polluting the rivers, wetlands, and lagoons. Environmental and social problems increased as the city expanded, and by the early 1990s, the Colombian capital had gained a reputation for being hopelessly polluted, chaotic, and crime-ridden.

Publication date: 
August 16, 2012
Publication type: 
Berkeley Review of Latin American Studies Article