The city of Dar es Salaam, being one of the fastest growing cities in Africa, is still characterized by poor infrastructure including roads, sewerage system, lack of road lights and modern bus stations, dump places and marketplaces for petty traders among others.
In an effort to address these challenges, the government, through the President’s Office -Regional Administration and Local Government (PO-RALG) – has decided to come up with a comprehensive project dubbed Dar es Salaam Metropolitan Development Project (DMDP), designed to address such challenges.
The five-year project kicked off last year under the supervision of PO-RALG with a soft loan from the World Bank totalling $300million (equivalent to Sh600bn).
The project is being implemented in the three municipalities of Kinondoni, Ilala and Temeke focusing on the improvement of infrastructure, strengthening institutional capacity to each municipal council and improving tax collection systems.
Speaking to reporters recently in Dar es Salaam during a media familiarisation tour of the project, Project Coordinator Edward Simon said Temeke Municipal Council (TMC) has benefitted most from the project with Sh265bn earmarked for its implementation.
This, he said, was because the municipality has a number of infrastructures to be constructed and others rehabilitated at high cost.
- project is people-centered as it involves them in all stages of its implementation. It is expected to cover 16 wards out of 23 wards in the district.
According to him, phase one of the project had already commenced and it was expected to end this month.
He said valuation of houses to be affected by the project had already been carried out and involved all the affected citizens.
“So far, the municipality has already disbursed a total of Sh18.1bn as compensation to some 2,113 people in the district,” he said.
Among other issues the project will also involve the establishment of a laboratory for testing and standardising building materials including soil and iron sheets.
Simon explained that part of the package for the project also involves the construction of an office building at a cost of Sh1.4bn, construction of Mwanamtoti road (1.8km), a bridge to link Kigamboni and Tuangoma.
The project will also see the construction of a modern market (shopping mall) that will ensure the availability of social services.
According to the project coordinator, the construction of a modern market will also go parallel with the construction of a feeder road connecting the market to the main road.
“The feeder roads connect to the main road and the bus rapid transit system, BRT,” he added.
Apart from that, the project will help to fix road lights and construction of a modern bus stand.
He explained that upon completion of the project it was expected that transport would be greatly improved.
Rutazibwa said that the laboratory will be able to test the strength of soil to be used in construction activities.
He said it will facilitate the project to get good, quality and appropriate materials for construction of roads and bridge.
“The laboratory will, among other things, be used by other institutions to test their samples for construction,” he said.
For his part, Temeke Municipal Director Nassib Mmbaga said the project will support the improvement of infrastructure and facilitate economic development while at the same time improving its tax collection system.
“We are working on improving the road network of about 81km, and we have so far used Sh80bn in the implementation of several projects,” the director said.
He said the municipality hoped to see the new city of Dar es Salaam having modern roads, street lights and an improved sewerage system.
According to him, the project will also help improve the people’s economy, especially petty traders, because the infrastructure wll attract investments and new settlements.
“In an effort to complement government initiatives in this project, we have decided to outsource a loan amounting to Sh20bn from a commercial bank to mainly foster the project’s implementation,” he said.
He said the municipality will also improve about 500 houses located in Kikunai area where a dispensary and schools will be located.
According to Municipal Mayor Abdallah Chaurembo, the project will go a long way to improving the lives of the residents.
The first phase of the project involves the construction of Mwanamtoti road (1.8km) including bridges, while the second phase will see the construction of a new settlement in Kijichi ward at a cost of Sh20bn.
Commenting on the project Mwajuma Mohamed, a food vendor along Mwanamtoti road, hailed the government for initiating the project in the area, saying it will help reduce dust at her workplace.
“We experienced a lot of dust in this area due to an unpaved road, as a result I received few customers due to the fact that many of them shun to take food in a dusty environment. Since the road was paved my business has been booming,” she said.