Garden Guardians of Medellin

Client: UN & The ‘Ashden Awards’

United Nations Environment Program

The ‘Ashden Awards’ celebrate environmental solutions that are helping combat climate change.

A winner in 2019 was Colombia’s city of Medellín and the, whose mayor has introduced ‘Green Corridors’ to combat rising street temperatures.

The 30 Green Corridors project was selected in the 2019 Ashden Awards in the category 'Cooling for People' for its contribution to improve the thermal footprint and aiding relief of heat stress in the city.


VR & AR Location based content

Project Brief

Surround Vision original concept.


Project Delivery

This VR film is part of our wider ‘Climate Changers’ series; and follows the ‘Garden Guardians’ who have helped transform the city in just two years, tackling the urban heat island effect, increasing biodiversity and cutting air pollution along 18 roads and 12 waterways.

The film mixes photogrammetry, CGI and 360º video, with motion graphics & animation that allow audiences to step into the Medellin story.


The Garden Gradians project involved planting trees, shrubs, palms, and green cover in an environmental network which connects: streams, hills, parks, and roads. Part of the strategy 'A greener Medellín for you', it consolidates an ecological network consisting of 18 roadways, 12 river basins and the Nutibara, El Volador and La Asomadera hills.

The Green Corridors offer a variety of ecosystem services, among which are the following:

  • An estimated reduction up to 2°C of the environment temperature.
  • The decrease of the heat island effect.
  • The capture of particulate matter, improving air quality.
  • The improvement of conditions for the conservation of biodiversity and the increase in the types of flora species.
  • The consolidation of an ecological network which allows the generation of new city scenarios, through the recovery and programmed sowing, the greening and modeling of the landscape within the framework of the man – ecosystem relationship.
  • The prioritization of the safety of pedestrians facilitating their mobility on crosswalks through planters and sidewalks.


Surround Vision worked alongside the Ashden Awards to create the film which was showcased at New York Climate week and is now being used by the UN’s environmental programme as part of their ‘cooling pavilion’ at COP 25 in Chile and bigger plans for the COP 26 in Glasgow.

Ashden, a UK non-profit organization which defends and supports sustainable energy leaders in the quick transition to a low-carbon world.

  • Gardener Gardians, UN Environment programme

“Medellín is a city which has overcome countless challenges. At this moment, caring for the environment and our air quality are two crucial issues we are facing. Structural solutions such as the Green Corridors are a strong commitment to improving the lives of our citizens. We are very excited that Ashden selected us and to be a benchmark for sustainability for the world,”

- Federico Gutiérrez Zuluaga, Mayor of Medellín