Alejandro believes in the ethical responsibility of designers to contribute towards a better society. He is cofounder and Director of URBAM, the Center for Urban and Environmental Studies, at EAFIT University in Medellin, Colombia. His experience combines architectural, urban, environmental projects and planning. He is a Loeb Fellow from Harvard GSD and was given the Obayashi Prize 2016.
Between 2004 and 2008 as Director of EDU, the Empresa de Desarrollo Urbano of the Municipality of Medellin, and then as the city’s director of urban projects, he led the Social Urbanism strategy to improve the most impoverished neighborhoods, with the support and partnership of the city’s mayor Sergio Fajardo; making Medellin a blueprint for the future for other distressed cities worldwide.
Since 2010, from URBAM, he delves into the urban, environmental and social issues of emerging developing countries, particularly those with weak political and institutional structures. He is also active in design through his studio, Alejandro Echeverri + Valencia Arquitectos, focusing on projects with low environmental impact for tropic regions. Alejandro has collaborated as a professor, lecturer and juror in various international and national institutions.
His work has earned the Colombian National Architectural Award in 1996, the Pan-American Biennale in Urban Design Award 2008, the Curry Stone Design Prize in 2009, the 10th Veronica Rudge Green Prize in Urban Design from Harvard GSD in 2013, among others.