Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai has signed the Memorandum of Understanding with the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) for the Road Component of the Kaduna Urban Renewal Project.
While signing the MoU at the Sir Kashim Ibrahim House, Kaduna, the Governor mentioned that, the launch is the most comprehensive urban renewal project in the history of Kaduna State.
“Beginning with Kaduna, our State capital, our government is initiating a series of investments in urban infrastructure. These investments will improve our competitiveness, support economic dynamism and promote the well-being of our people. Similar projects are envisaged for our two other main cities, Kafanchan and Zaria” he explained.
The Governor said the project responds to the accelerated urbanisation of Kaduna City, saying, the State capital now straddles four local government areas which are Kaduna North, South, Chikun and Igabi respectively.
“This metropolitan area is projected to be home to more than half of the state’s population by 2050. It seeks to make Kaduna a friendly home to its residents, a safe place to live in, equipped to support and promote the livelihoods of our citizens”, he stressed.
“Kaduna city has grown tremendously in the 100 years since its founding but public infrastructure in the city has not kept pace with the vast increase in its population, neither has infrastructure followed its expansion into new districts. We acknowledge that the existing infrastructure is not robust enough to support the current population, let alone cater for the projected population” the Governor stated.
El- Rufai further stated that, the renewal seeks to transform into opportunity the challenges that exist in delivering urban infrastructure. “It is an accelerated, coordinated, integrated and sustainable urban renewal project that will position the State as a choice place to work, live and play.
“There are 14 components at the heart of the project which include roads, mass Transit, housing & Improved Land Use, street Lights, parks & recreational centres, markets & neighbourhood centres, and waste Management”.
Governor El-Rufai said the roads component will open up the city and connect communities by creating alternative roads and reducing travel time from north to south, and east to west. It will have a multiplier effect on housing, business and social development and also expected to promote integration across communities and enhance unity.
“The roads captured in the project represent a significant investment in the present and the future of our capital city. They have to be constructed and delivered to world-class standards in reasonable time, with markings, solar lighting and shoulders, hence the signing a Memorandum of Understanding with CCECC to build all the new roads and upgrade the existing ones”.
The Governor added that, the road projects will also embrace the demands of Mass Transit Programme. It will bring to fruition the long-held aspirations for a mass transit system by unveiling its chosen operators for the bus mass transit when it concludes the selection process.
He therefore called on the public to support the delivery of the projects for the benefit of all, adding that, widening roads will require the removal of buildings, attachments in the public interest and also impose some temporary inconveniences.
Government has given the assurance that some of the roads will be delivered within 12 months while many of the other roads will be delivered over a 24-month time frame.