The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode yesterday stated that the present administration intends to create a city that is not only livable but also works for everyone.
The Governor, who spoke through the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Tunji Bello at a workshop on “Urban Thinkers Campus – The City we Need” held at the Academy Hall Agidingbi, Ikeja noted that the administration is committed to a city with a robust master plan that is diligently implemented and enforced.
According to him, “Our approach to evolving the city we need or a livable city is to ensure inclusive growth through an equal spread of social and economic infrastructure to the different parts of the State”.
“The idea is to make it possible for the residents to live and work within their communities without a feeling of being left behind as a result of unequal distribution of social amenities”, he explained.
He said the successful implementation of the ongoing reforms in the transportation sector across the State is essential to the realisation of the urban regeneration and development.
Ambode stressed that the Strategic Transport Master plan is a statement of the present administration’s commitment to deliver a multi-modal transportation system that is modern, safe, reliable and comfortable for all residents.
He averred that when the Master plan is fully implemented, the distance between the place of work and place of residence will no longer be a factor similar to the situation in modern city States with a well-developed and organized transport infrastructure.
The Governor expressed appreciation to the UN- Habitat Urban campaign for the initiative, adding that the Government and all Lagosians are delighted that the State was chosen as one of the 74 Urban Thinkers Campuses worldwide.
He said that this confers on the State the privilege of being one of the global centres providing a platform for stakeholders in sustainable urbanization to exchange ideas, forge partnerships and proffer solutions to the challenges of urbanization in contemporary modern cities.
He maintained that Lagos State is strategically positioned to play a leading role in propelling development on the continent being the 5th largest economy and fastest growing city in Africa with over 22 million people.
He stated that the increasing population has its economic benefit in terms of the large market for goods, services and labour, stressing that this can only be optimized with systematic planning for the basic amenity needs of the population.
Earlier in his remarks, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, TPL Wasiu Anifowoshe, said this initiative was conceived to critically exchange ideas between Urban Researchers, Local Governments, Grassroot communities, policy makers and stakeholders in order to proffer solutions to urban challenges and promote sustainable urbanization.
He urged everyone to collectively tackle these challenges faced by the cities so that urbanization characterized by slum development will not take precedence.
In her goodwill message, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Urban Development, Mrs. Yetunde Onabule advised residents to support the efforts of the government on development and redevelopment of the city in order to move from the megacity vision to that of a smart city.
The workshop was attended by personalities from the academia and stakeholders in the built industry. (LASG)