Tuesday, January 27, 2009

20,000 Caracas squatters safe--for now

The Mayor of Libertador, the municipality that encompasses the western part of Caracas, says that squatters in 241 apartment buildings will stay in their homes, the Latin American Herald Tribune reports. Mayor Jorge Rodríguez has issued a decree to ban evictions in the area, says the paper, which seems to stand against the squatters.

The squatters seem caught in the middle of a dispute between supporters and opponents of President Hugo Chavez. The former 'Chavista' mayor allowed the squatters to move in to several hundred vacant buildings in the city. In the last election, the opposition won, and took over the reins of city government, while Chavistas like Mayor Rodriguez won in some local government areas. The Chavistas seem to be trying to keep the squatters in, while the opposition may be currying favor with landowners and developers.

3 comments:

Ewan said...

Really interesting post. It's encouraging to see the PSUV taking a positive stance on the right to housing and public space. Just found & bookmarked your blog.

Nancy said...

Hi,

I'm a London based, final year post-grad architecture student who will be producing a documentary this summer about the rise of squatter cities internationally from an architectural angle. I'm hoping to explore the architectural qualities of self design and community collaboration outside the boundaries of 'normal' society. I'm also hoping that the documentary will create awareness about the massive gulf that exists between our normal understanding of a city and the new reality (as very engagingly shown in your TED lecture) of squatter cities. I was hoping I could ask you some questions / advice? My email address is nancy.nibhriain@hotmail.com

Kind regards,

Nancy

Frank A. Mills said...

Hi Robert, it has been a while, but after checking out your blogs once again, I thought you might be interested in checking out the newest endeavor from Urban Paradoxes, the URBAN PARADOXES E-ZINE (http://www.urbanparadoxes.com). If you like what you see, please consider a submission for publication. Revitalizing our urban neighborhoods takes a community effort. If you can publicize the zine a bit too, that will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Frank
urbanparadoxes@yahoo.com