The World Bank approved $100.5 million to improve public spaces and urban services in four large neighborhoods under the Dhaka South City Corporation benefitting about a million residents.
The Dhaka City Neighborhood Upgrading Project will enhance the livability of the selected neighborhoods by improving selected public open spaces such as parks, playgrounds, waterfronts; streets, sidewalks; and public buildings, such as community centers with integrated public facilities. The project will cater to the needs of women, youths, elderly and disabled, who often refrain from using public amenities.
“Dhaka is the most important economic center of Bangladesh, accounting for one-fifth of its GDP, and almost half of its formal employment. Its population has grown from 3 million in 1980 to 18 million today. But, its infrastructure could not keep up with its population growth,” said Robert Saum, World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan. “Global experience shows that good public urban spaces are fundamental to improving the quality of life. The project will pilot interventions to enable the residents better use and enjoy public urban spaces.”
Through a wide range of consultations with stakeholders, four localities have been selected, which are: Kamrangir Char, Lalbagh, Sutrapur-Nayabazar-Gulistan and Khilgaon-Mugda-Bashabo. The project will also pilot interventions for better traffic management and safe mobility. This will include developing plans for traffic management as well as improving intersection geometry and walkability for pedestrians.
The project will help increase green open spaces by enhancing selected parks, streets and waterfront areas, in both low-income neighborhoods and downtown areas. Multipurpose community centers will include a mix of new uses to serve neighborhoods and incorporate environment-friendly features and energy efficient design principles and materials.
The credit from the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), which provides concessional financing, has a 30-year term, including a five-year grace period, and an interest rate of 1.25 percent with a service charge of 0.75 percent.
Original source: World Bank
Published on 29 March 2019