Sense of the City

The Strate­gic Cities Devel­op­ment Project (SCDP) in Sri Lanka is set to usher in a new era of pros­per­ity.

Southasia - - FEATURE SRI LANKA -

Bounc­ing back from a 30-year old civil war that ended in 2009, Sri Lanka’s econ­omy has grown at an av­er­age 6.4 per­cent (2010-2015). This re­flects the coun­try’s de­ter­mined pol­icy to­wards peace­ful re­con­struc­tion and growth. Sri Lanka faces the chal­lenge of pro­vid­ing ba­sic ur­ban ser­vices and in­fra­struc­ture to the grow­ing de­mand of an urbanization process and struc­tural re­for­ma­tion. A shift in the ru­ral/ur­ban pop­u­la­tion ra­tio is a part of eco­nomic and in­dus­trial devel­op­ment. The coun­try wants to give its cit­i­zens ac­cess to eco­nomic op­por­tu­ni­ties with bet­ter liv­ing con­di­tions, while pre­serv­ing its cul­tural val­ues.

Af­ter Colombo,

the

im­por­tant

By Yas­min Elahi sec­ondary cities of Kandy, Galle and Jaffna are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing rapid growth in their pop­u­la­tion and in­dus­tries, as well as pro­vid­ing huge op­por­tu­ni­ties to the coun­try’s al­ready boom­ing econ­omy. The in­crease in pop­u­la­tion also brings in a higher con­cen­tra­tion of poverty, con­ges­tion and de­cline in ac­cess to qual­ity civic ser­vices and fa­cil­i­ties. To meet this chal­lenge, a com­pre­hen­sive pro­gram called Strate­gic Cities Devel­op­ment Project (SCDP) has been launched.

SCDP is a part of Sri Lanka’s Na­tional City Devel­op­ment Pro­gram. The project aims at im­prov­ing ba­sic in­fra­struc­ture ser­vices in the rapidly grow­ing cities of Kandy, Jaffna and Galle and cre­at­ing a net­work of well-con­nected cities. It is be­ing sup­ported by the World Bank ini­tially through a $202 mil­lion devel­op­ment credit. The project is ex­pected to cost $257.08 mil­lion with the rest be­ing funded by the Sri Lankan gov­ern­ment. SCDP is planned to be com­pleted by De­cem­ber 31, 2021 and some 650,000 peo­ple are ex­pected to ben­e­fit from it.

Aligned with the gov­ern­ment’s devel­op­ment agenda, SCDP aims at im­prov­ing in­fra­struc­ture and pro­vid­ing bet­ter liv­ing con­di­tions to the res­i­dents and to the grow­ing vol­ume of tourists. The project will work on im­prov­ing ba­sic ur­ban ser­vices i.e. wa­ter sup­ply, drainage, traf­fic man­age­ment, tourism

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