There is much talk today in policy circles about "transforming urban space" to make our cities both more efficient and equitable, i.e. by giving access to a majority of people who remain currently marginalised from the services, amenities and varying economic opportunities of urban life. Would spatial reconfiguration bring about more efficiently functioning cities and would these interventions bring about material change in the well-being and livelihoods of the majority of people living in them?
THE World Bank and the government will use Sh15 billion on slum upgrading projects in 15 towns in the country. The bank has given to the government the funds to implement the slum housing projects in Nairobi and other major towns including Mombasa, Kisumu and Eldoret.
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Political interference has led to the messy situation and poor physical planning in urban centres in the country, Savino Katsigaire, the director of Physical Planning and Urban Development, has said.
“It is lack of integrity for politicians to ignore the existing laws and interfere in the planning of towns instead of giving experts the freedom to play their role in planning the towns,” he said.
He added that politicians do this in order to safeguard their votes.
NAIVASHA, KENYA - Kenya Electricity Generating Company ( KenGen) said that its new geothermal plant under construction in the Rift Valley is expected to generate more power than previous estimates.
Kenya frequently suffers power outages and is racing to wean itself off unreliable rain-fed hydroelectric dams. The country's electricity demand stands at about 1,700 megawatts (MW) against supply of 1,300 MW.
Many supposed beneficiaries of the slum narrate their travails.
The tap water near Usman Bala’s home has run dry. The generator-powered bore hole installed at Kasunmu Street, Agege, in 2008, brought a much sought after succour to the residents; but packed up months later.
“When it first started, it reduced the task because we use to trek a lot before we can get water,” said Mr. Bala, 30.
In Dhaka, the poor mostly live near river banks, where they face the constant risk of floods and landslides. Because of the high cost of land, the urban poor can only afford to live near drainage congestions or on the edges of deep narrow valleys, areas which are prone to flooding because of the heavy rainfall, exacerbated by rapid climate change in the last few decades.
The German development arm, GIZ in conjunction with Water for People, an international NGO has launched a new waste removal technology to curb dumping of faecal waste in water channels and polythene bags improvised toilets referred to as 'flying toilets', in the city.
Known as gulper, the technology is expected to improve sanitation and enhance public health safety.
The technology empties latrines in areas where waste removal trucks (cess pool emptiers) cannot reach due to poor urban planning policies.
African Programme on Rethinking Development Economics (APORDE) is pleased to announce that the seventh edition of the African Programme on Rethinking Development Economics (APORDE) will be held in Johannesburg (South Africa) from 2nd to 14th September 2013.
APORDE is a high-level training programme in development economics which aims to build capacity in economics and economic policy-making. The course will run for two weeks and consist of lectures and seminars taught by leading international and African economists.