A workshop on long-term urban expansion planning for rapidly growing cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, with a focus on the cities of Borama and Gabiley. On invitation only.

Rural-to-urban migration is one of the major dynamics secondary cities across the developing world have to manage. The situation is especially acute in the Horn of Africa. Rural-to-urban migration is not the only reason secondary cities in the Horn of Africa are growing fast; natural growth and expanding jurisdictions are also factors. It is, however, by far estimated to be the main cause of growth in secondary cities.

In partnership with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the Cities Alliance Cities and Migration programme has identified a promising approach to help cities in low-income countries better manage rural-urban migration: urban expansion planning.

The programme supports nine cities across the Horn of Africa to apply proactive and climate-sensitive urban expansion planning to enable the integration of migrants through better connections of the urban periphery to the existing city. The cities of Borama and Gabiley, in Somaliland, participate in the programme as learning cities.

On 9 and 10 March, the Hargeysa Cultural Centre (HCC) and Cities Alliance will host a workshop on Managing Urban Expansion. The event will convene ministerial, regional and local urban government stakeholders of Somaliland, academic institutions as well as development partners.

The workshop aims at creating awareness and deepening the understanding of the purpose and relevance of long-term urban expansion planning for rapidly growing cities in Sub-Saharan Africa, review the progress of Borama and Gabily Urban Expansion teams to date, prepare the first draft of their urban expansion plans, define key steps, roles, responsibilities, and the timeline for the finalization and approval of the plans and mobilise high-level political and technical buy-in at a national level.

Between June 2020 and March 2021 Borama and Gabiley cities implemented some of the prerequisite tasks for preparing their urban expansion plans. This includes discussions with national, regional, and city-level stakeholders and UN-Habitat on urban expansion planning, the formation of urban expansion teams, compiling historic population and land/area data,  as well as projection of population growth in the next 30 years. The activities were interrupted by the Covid-19 restrictions that hindered the participation of the two cities in the urban expansion planning workshop held in March 2021 in Jigjiga, Ethiopia. 

Urban Expansion Planning Workshop Horn of Africa March 2022
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