A growth strategy to reshape the city
Broadway Malyan, on behalf of the Luanda City authorities and the Angolan Government, led an international team responsible for developing a strategy to accommodate the projected population growth with improved infrastructure, transport and housing provision for the capital city of Angola.
Luanda is a world city in the making; its wider metropolitan area is currently home to over 6.5 million inhabitants and set to accommodate up to 12.9 million people by 2030.
Located on the western coast of southern Africa, Luanda is the capital city of Angola. The country has a landmass of over 1.2M km², more than France, Germany and the UK combined, largely covered with open savannah forest and dispersed settlements. Luanda is Angola’s largest city, home to 27% of its population, a figure that is set to rise significantly by 2030.
The city’s geography, socio-economic conditions, morphology, transport, infrastructure and environmental context have been analysed, and complex development scenarios tested, leading to the preparation of a sensitive and sustainable long-term urban renewal and growth plan.
Luanda is a city originally built for 500,000 people, now home to more than six million residents.
The masterplanning challenge
In order to build traction and share the ownership of the plan, we needed to establish an inclusive process to gather and reflect the true aspirations of Luanda’s citizens and institutional stakeholders. To this end, we consulted widely, with people living in informal settlements and university students, business owners and community leaders. In parallel, our engagement with the government, from local municipalities to national decision-makers, gave us a clear understanding of the political environment at all levels and enabled us to pitch our ideas within the right framework.
We were fortunate to be provided with a huge amount of information at the start of the project and we ended up reviewing more than 10,000 documents. Luanda’s government saw an opportunity to achieve their long-term goals by setting up a GIS land-use model for the province. The absence of coordinated digital map information meant we had to start from scratch, but it was worth the effort and we avoided the project grinding to a halt.
Luanda 2030: a vision for the future
The result is a plan that offers a new model for urban growth in Africa and elsewhere. It provides a fully integrated and costed framework, which complements or replaces prior legislation, policies and programmes to guide government spending. It also responds to economic challenges that emerged during the project by providing a focused road map for phased, prioritised implementation.
The strategy allows the city to embrace the natural context of its verdant river basins and sandy coastal beaches as major assets integral to its revitalised green network.
The aim of the masterplan is to establish Luanda as a major economic force in Africa, as well as transforming it into one of the continent’s most liveable cities.
“I am tremendously proud of all that has been achieved on The Luanda Plan, which offers a clear pathway to a strong and prosperous future for the citizens of our great capital city.”
The strategy behind the plan
Our integrated framework for sustainable growth required a robust yet flexible economic base. Building on the existing policy framework, a set of strategic objectives were established to accommodate growth and support the spatial elements of the plan focussing on economic diversification, managing demographic growth, balanced economic development and international competitiveness.
Our approach to develop an integrated vision also brought us to combine land-use spatial planning with an assessment of transport needs and solutions, applying Transport Oriented Development (TOD) principles to Luanda’s route network to improve cross-city connectivity, diversify peak-time travel routes and broaden the city’s land-use distribution.
While developing proposals for the plan, we never forgot that green cities are healthy cities. Our 2030 plan for Luanda seeks to clean up the city by transforming its watercourses and radically improving the condition of the marine environment. The strategy allows the city to embrace the natural context of its verdant river basins and sandy coastal beaches as major assets integral to its revitalised green network.
“The Plan will leave a mark in Luanda’s history. It is the staring point of a new common consciousness. An awareness that to live in balance with our territory and our environment, we must foresee, plan, prepare, and create the right framework for urban development.”Neusa Inglês, Urbinveste