Kandy urban plan ready for public comments | Sunday Observer

Kandy urban plan ready for public comments

The Urban Development Authority (UDA) of Sri Lanka and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) have been working together since February 2017 to formulate the urban development vision, plan and design guidelines with the objective of realising Kandy’s unique socio-economic potential while preserving its ancient heritage.

An urban planning expert team from Japan worked together with officials of UDA Kandy office, in collecting available data, analysing the current situation, and recommending improvements to urban plans and regulations to meet the Government’s expectations and citizens’ aspirations for Kandy.

“The most important benefit from this technical cooperation is the exposure to urban planning methodologies and experiences from Japan the young UDA officers received from the Japanese experts. This experience will help them to improve both the planning and implementation processes of urban development” noted Dr. Jagath Munasinghe, Chairman of UDA.

UDA’s urban plan for Kandy is due to be submitted for public comment, and gazetted after due process. The technical cooperation from JICA was to provide technical inputs to enhance and improve the urban plan, as well as the process of formulation.

“Our experience in Japan is that development plans or regulations could be successfully implemented only if they were prepared in consultation with the affected citizens from the outset. In Kandy, this kind of practice is not easy as there is a high level of diversity in terms of social, economic and ethno-religious considerations. So if the practice is to be used, it has to be adapted to ensure inclusivity and equity in representation of the citizens”Chief Representative of JICA in Sri Lanka, Fusato Tanaka said.

The final seminar to present the findings and recommendations of the technical cooperation project was held in Kandy on August 9th 2018 with the participation of Minister of Megapolis & Western Development Patali Champika Ranawaka, and Ambassador of Japan, Kenichi Suganuma, to Sri Lanka as guests of honour. Over 100 officials from the organisations representing the Steering Committee and working groups of the technical cooperation project attended the seminar.

Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is the executing agency of Japan’s Bilateral Official Development Assistance (ODA). JICA, the world biggest bilateral aid agency, works in over 150 countries and regions. In accordance with its vision of “Inclusive and Dynamic Development,” JICA supports the resolution of development issues in developing countries. In Sri Lanka, Japan has been providing financial and technical assistance since 1954 and is one of the largest donors to the country. On behalf of the people and the Government of Japan, JICA contributes to improve the lives of people in Sri Lanka.