David Yu/Flickr

Les villes porteuses d'espoir

NEW YORK – Le mois dernier, le Forum mondial des villes a rassemblé quelques 22 000 personnes à Medellin en Colombie pour débattre de l'avenir des villes. Il a eu pour thème central "des villes pour la vie", autrement dit la promotion d'un développement équitable dans un environnement urbain. Les villes rassemblent déjà plus de la moitié de la population mondiale et en 2050 cette part atteindra les deux tiers.

Le lieu du Forum était symbolique : très connue dans le passé pour ses gangs de trafiquants de drogue, Medellin a acquis la réputation bien méritée de ville parmi les plus innovantes de la planète. Sa transformation peut servir d'exemple.

Dans les années 1980 et 1990, les chefs des cartels de la drogue comme l'infâme Pablo Escobar y imposaient leur ordre. La puissance d'Escobar tenait non seulement au trafic hautement profitable de cocaïne au niveau international (alimenté par la demande aux USA), mais aussi à l'injustice sociale à Medellin et plus généralement en Colombie. Sur les flancs escarpés des collines qui entourent la ville, de grands bidonvilles laissés à l'abandon par le gouvernement servaient de vivier de recrutement pour les cartels. Escobar terrorisait Medellin, néanmoins en l'absence de services publics, par ses largesses il est devenu très populaire auprès des pauvres.

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