Medellín has recovered from the crisis of the 80s and 90s, when it was mostly known for crime and drug cartels. Since then, the city has undergone remarkable urban regeneration that has triggered positive social change. In response to their tireless campaign against violence and poverty, and their commitment to urban development, the city has been named most innovative city and received numerous awards for planning and design.
Medellín is one of the most populated regions in the country and the second most populated city in Colombia. Since it was founded almost 400 years ago, it has been a prosperous commercial center of trade and new technology. Medellín continues to undergo a rapid transformation. Like many Latin American cities, it is shifting from a predominantly industrial city to one that is service- oriented. As a centre for economic development, Medellin attracts many migrants from throughout the country and is a popular corporate business destination in Latin America.
As a city that has rapidly developed, many of the buildings are shifting functions. In the central areas of the city, buildings which were previously residential or industrial are being transformed into offices. Many of the new users belong to the IT and services- oriented industries, as well as a growing number of small businesses run by young entrepreneurs. They rent or modify spaces in existing buildings, turning them into their place of work.
Due to its permanent tropical condition and the absence of seasons, Medellín is known as the city of eternal Spring. Settled in a natural river basin, the city is highly sensitive to the geography of the Andes mountains. With elevations in the valley ranging from 1,300 to 2,800 meters above sea level, the sunshine and climate fluctuate throughout the day. In this tropical rainforest climate, temperatures range from from 17° C in the morning and 32°C during mid-afternoon. Medellín is comparatively cooler than cities located in proximity to the equator, but at lower altitudes. The north and southern sections of the valley are luminous, and the sunlight can be regulated with ease. Even though the city has a stable climactic condition, some parts of the city have characteristic microclimates. The city centre, for instance, is very urbanized and has very little green cover.