The United Nations Human Settlements Program, UN-Habitat Andean Countries HUB has been in Colombia since 2003 promoting sustainable urban development. Its purpose is to technically assist national and territorial governments and other social and academic actors, in the implementation of the SDGs, in particular SDG 11 "Sustainable Cities and Communities" and the precepts of the New Urban Agenda. For this matter, its actions are focused on the design, implementation and evaluation of urban public policies and urban planning instruments, using the best practices and knowledge accumulated in the country and in other parts of the world on topics such as planning, Governance, economic development and urban finance, climate change, urban legislation and citizen participation.

Colombia is a country that is experiencing an accelerated urbanization process, with about 75 per cent of the population living in urban centers and more than 64 cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants, facing great challenges and opportunities for urban and regional development. It has also had to cope with the impact that violence has caused in the main capitals, face the recent wave of Venezuelan immigration, and mitigate the impact of climate change on sustainability.

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The urban population annual growth rate is
The percentage of the total population that is urban is

"This strategy is a long-term commitment that reaffirms the compromise of this government in the future. We already have 2.6 kilometers of cycle-infrastructure, which joins the Children's Park with the Industrial University of Santander, UIS. Next year we will implement around 17 additional kilometers to connect the busiest communes in the city."

Manuel Francisco Azuero Figueroa, Dispatch Advisor and Chief of Staff of the Mayor's Office

Leaving no one and no place behind

Hover over or click the icons to learn about UN-Habitat's work on social inclusion here.

UN-Habitat Andean Countries HUB, in alliance with UNHCR and IOM with the cooperation of the European Union, is developing a Project called 'Fostering local communities of solidarity for migrants and refugees from Venezuela', that seeks to provide stable and lasting solutions for Venezuelans migrants who are currently in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and the Dominican Republic.

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UN-Habitat together with the AVP Foundation for Social Development, implemented a project called "Generating Safe and Inclusive Territories for Women in Bogotá”, the objective was based on managing and developing safer and more inclusive public spaces for women in their diversity, in ten local territories of the Colombian capital. In the same way, with about 50 women's social organizations, the territorial urban plan of Bogotá was analyzed and reforms and actions were proposed to include the perspective of gender and the economy of care.

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The United Nations Human Settlements Program UN-Habitat, together with the Mayor's Office of Santa Marta and the Mayor's Office of Bogotá DC, carried out the Report of the State of the Prosperity of Urban Youth in Colombia 'REJUC', where It is evident that the youth of the cities are below all indicators of urban prosperity, which demands the design of special public policies to overcome the levels of marginality and segregation.

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Sustainable urban development can only be achieved if persons with disabilities are included meaningfully in decision-making and are able to access their rights. UN-Habitat partners with representative groups and individual rights holders, as well as national and local governments, relevant UN bodies and civil society to maximize impact and to meaningfully ensure that the rights including accessibility and universal design of persons with disabilities are promoted, respected and protected. 

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Donors and partners

UN-Habitat's success work in the country has been based on the joint labor that has been developing with the National and local governments. The government institutions, which it has most interacted with, are the National Planning Department DNP, the Ministry of Housing, City and Territory, associations such as Asocapitales, Asoareas, Asomunicipios, control and surveillance agencies such as the Controlaría, the Procuraduría General of the Nation and the Municipal Personerías. It has also built important alliances with the academy (National University, University of the Andes, Rosary University in Bogotá, EAFIT and Pontificia Bolivariana in Medellin, Industrial University of Santander in Bucaramanga, University of Valle in Cali, and North University in Barranquilla) , and with economic associations such as CAMACOL, ANDI, and other institutions of the civil society such as the Chamber of Commerce, trade unions and social leaders organizations.