Back in 2016, more than 240,000 people in the City of Buenos Aires lived in neighbourhoods considered vulnerable to climate breakdown. These areas were deemed at risk due to high population density, poor clean air circulation and basic infrastructure, and a lack of green space that contributed to the “urban heat island” effect.

Rodrigo Bueno was at particular risk due to its location; situated in the 1° Comuna, an area that borders the Costanera Sur Ecological Reserve, the neighbourhood comprised of informal settlements with precarious housing structures and lacked adequate waste treatment, creating an imminent risk for the local community, wildlife and natural surroundings. 

The Buenos Aires City Housing Institute recognised this and, from 2017, began working with Rodrigo Bueno residents to sustainably develop the area, improve residents’ quality of life, and enhance the area’s climate resilience. Locals were involved in all stages of the project’s development to ensure changes to the area served their needs, and those living in areas most at risk of flooding and environmental degradation were rehoused as a priority.

Watch the video below to learn about the project:

Maria Migliore, Human Development and Habitat Office Secretary, said: “The integration project that we carried out in Rodrigo Bueno is a clear example of our work to bridge the gap between neighbourhoods in Buenos Aires. We are taking these concrete and sustainable actions so that families live better and can meet their full potential; we are convinced that the place you are born does not define your future.

“Everyday, we choose to transform the reality of the people who live in Buenos Aires. What’s more, it is fundamental to make progress with these social and urban integration projects, so that we can bring together the city’s neighbourhoods and improve their connection to the rest of the city, thereby improving the daily lives of the people who reside here.” 

This article was originally produced as a “Spaces in the City” feature for the C40 World Mayors Summit 2022 hosted by the City of Buenos Aires.

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