The President of the Ghana Institute of Architects, Samuel Quartey, has urged government to engage more with architects to design more resilient, inclusive, safe and sustainable cities and human settlements.
For most architects, they believe Ghana’s environment has lacked proper planning, leading to a disorganized urban extension without the corresponding provision of social infrastructure.
Speaking to Citi Business News, Mr. Quartey said government needs to do more to take advantage of the pool of architects in the country to achieve SDG goal 11 which recognizes the important role planned cities play in addressing global challenges.
“We have come from far. Today, I will say there is good progress. There is still more to be done. Our cities are yet to be built. The Ghanaian architect is ready to take on the challenge and we are hoping that we will get more opportunities to showcase what we can do for the people of Ghana. I believe it is a source of great pride for any architect to do something for his nation and I want the government to understand that this is important.”
“There are procurement provisions so if there are projects of national significance, we would like to engage in. Worldwide, cities are defined by their buildings and the looks. Accra as well as Kumasi and all of our cities are yet to be truly defined. We are ready. We go through six years of training in schools here which have international accreditation. So, the quality that we produce are fit to practice anywhere in the world. We will appeal to government to continue to engage more with us to showcase what the Ghanaian architect can do,” he said.
Already, housing in Ghana is challenged in all aspects – from land acquisition through to construction of the physical structure and access to basic services and infrastructure as well as financing.
Many stakeholders have called for a comprehensive housing policy as well as a financial strategy to implement projects.
Also, the World Bank has committed USD 570 million to, in part, help make Accra Africa’s cleanest city. USD 557 million of the fund is in credits, while the remaining USD 13 million is in grants.
This is also to help the Akufo-Addo administration fulfill its promise to make Accra the tidiest city on the continent.
One of the projects that will be financed include the Greater Accra and Integrated Development (GARID) initiative. This is a USD 200 million multi-sector and transformative urban project tailored to bolster the city to become safer, more resilient and cleaner.