Medellín, Colombia’s second largest city, has been named a 2016 recipient of the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Wednesday, 16 March.
It beat out four other finalists – Auckland, Sydney, Vienna and Toronto, which will be honoured with a special mention.
“Medellín’s transformation has been extraordinary. It has gone from being one of the world’s most dangerous cities into a liveable and innovative city,” said Kishore Mahbubani, Chairman of the Nominating Committee.
“Its success gives hope to many cities in developing countries, where the next wave of massive urbanisation will take place. Medellín can become a Mecca of learning for them. We are therefore proud to award the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize to Medellín.”
The city is no stranger to this prestigious award. In 2014, it received a special mention for its creative and non-conventional urban solutions, such as the world’s first cable car system for daily commuting, library parks that also serve as social nodes in the city’s poorest districts, and escalators that have greatly improved mobility in one of its most troubled neighbourhoods.
Medellín is the fourth recipient of the accolade, after previous winners Suzhou in China, Spain’s Bilbao and New York City.
A total of 38 cities were nominated for this year’s prize. They were screened through a two-tier selection process by the Nominating Committee and a Prize Council. The finalists were chosen based on levels of leadership, innovation, as well as the impact and durability of initiatives.
The Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize comprises a gold medallion, an award certificate, and a $300,000 sponsorship courtesy of Keppel Corporation.
It will be awarded at the upcoming World Cities Summit, to be held from 10 to 14 July at Marina Bay Sands.
Picture Source: Medellín is the second largest city in Colombia.
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