Issue 13: The Split Wall

Elisa Silva

Reading time: 11 minutes



The Urban Cassandras of Our Times

Elisa Silva develops a reflection that reexamines informal settlements from the possibilities that these offer to create public spaces and fight social inequality in the process of a more inclusive urbanism.

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  1. The population density in formally planned areas of the Baruta Municipality is 53 people/hectare, while in informal settlements it rises to an average of 375 people/hectare.

  2. World Bank. Accessed on January 7, 2018: [http://data.worldbank.org].

  3. Elisa Silva, et al. CABA: Cartografía de los barrios de Caracas 1966–2014. (Caracas, 2015), p. 181

  4. Aron Maasho, Ethiopia 80% of urban population lives in slums in Ethiopia. Sapa-AFP, January 18, 2007. Accesed on February 7, 2018: [http://nazret.com/blog/index.php/2007/01/18/ethiopia_80_of_urban_population_live_in].

  5. United Nations Population Fund. Accessed on January 7, 2018: [http://www.unfpa.org/urbanization].

  6. In his book Arrival City: How the largest migration in history is reshaping our world (New York: Vitange, 2012), Doug Saunders argues that in the twenty-first century, a third of the world’s population is on the move. Informal settlements or “arrival cities” receive migratory populations but in an explicitly segregated manner that keeps them isolated from “formal” urban dynamics. In this sense, reflections on territorial inequality must extend beyond citizens and include immigrants.

  7. Jordi Borja, and Z. Muxi. El espacio público: ciudad y ciudadanía. (Barcelona, 2003).

  8. The expected publication date for this text is May 2019.

  9. Federico Vegas, La fascinación. Prodavinci, September 29, 2018: [https://prodavinci.com/autores_pd/federicovegas/].

  10. E. Silva p. 181.

  11. Idem. This growth rate has been confirmed by Federico Villanueva and Josefina Baldó’s studies in the Plan de Habilitación Física de Barrios, 1996.


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