Tuesday, May 2, 2017

How to Kill a Neighborhood

When the city slashed a four-lane avenue through the hardscrabble Egipto neighborhood above La Candelaria last year, it may have eased the commutes of some wealthy Bogotanos, but it cut the heart out of this already-troubled neighborhood.

A mother and daughter walk past a spot where small
businesses were demolished to widen the avenue.
Construction not only razed small businesses and homes along the avenue route, it also divided the neighborhood in two and has residents risking life and limb to cross what had been a narrow street.

Few residents of the impoverished and high-crime Egipto neighborhood own cars, but they suffer the expanded avenue's dangers, pollution and ugliness.

Planners seem to have forgotten about pedestrians: Street lights are far apart. Here, two women climb over the dividing rail. 
Pedestrians then must wait for a chance to cross the avenue.
The avenue benefits wealthier outsiders. Few Egipto residents own cars. 

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

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