Accra to become an economic powerhouse – Report
A final draft report for the preparation of a structure plan for Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA) has indicated that the plan will turn Accra into an economic powerhouse.
The 20-year structure plan, which is currently a proposal, would help develop the area into zones like industrial, economic, educational, residential, civic and culture zones when approved and implemented.
This was revealed during a stakeholder engagement workshop on the final draft report, where participants, including local authorities, traditional leaders, and officials from government agencies, made contributions to the report.
The plan would feed into the local plans of the assemblies to address economic, social and environmental concerns through strategies and action policies for the growth of new and change of existing communities.
It would define broad land uses and delineate major infrastructure needs, including transportation, water supply, wastewater, sewerage, power, and ICT networks.
GAMA currently holds 6.2 million people or 20 per cent of Ghana’s population and by 2050 it could gain another 9 million.
The report said between 2000 and 2015, GAMA accounted for a fifth of the increase in national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and it is one of Africa’s leading hubs for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
“It absorbs more than 80 percent of Ghana’s FDI projects. GAMA is an economic powerhouse not in Ghana and West Africa but across Africa,” the report said.
In 2020, the Government of Ghana received financing from the African Development Bank (AfDB) for the project “Consulting Services for the Development Structure Plan for Greater Accra Metropolitan Area.”
The project was executed for the Ministry of Roads and Highways, Department of Urban Roads, by the consultant, COWI Denmark in collaboration with Maple Consult Ghana. The technical oversight was done by the Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority.
The African Development Bank had assisted the Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority (LUSPA) to prepare the plan that would also guide the preparation of local plans within the next twenty years.
Mr Chapman Owusu Sekyere, Director for Spatial Planning, LUSPA, said, the Plan would help revise the schemes governing the localities and certain facilities would be put in place as the population kept increasing.
“We shall make judicious use of our land. It would create access in areas where road accessibility is a problem and ease traffic congestion,” he said.
He said some critical decisions like moving people from one area to the other to pave way for the Plan, adding that compensations would be paid.
Mr Frank Osei-Sekyere, Deputy Director for Planning and Development, Department of Urban Roads, said the Plan would help prevent people from moving to places without road layouts.
“It makes construction of roads difficult and expensive, especially with the payment of the compensation. It is in the benefit of the Road Ministry to support LUSPA,” he said.
How can you not integrate rail into the development plan? Monorail, underground, trams and high-speed trains will make the plan more valid.