BY SILAS NKALA
BULAWAYO City Council (BCC) has adopted the Bulawayo Master Plan 2019-34, which is expected to assist in refurbishing old infrastructure.
The master plan was adopted after BCC conducted consultations with residents in April this year for the development of the city’s southern and central areas.
In a notice to residents last Wednesday, town clerk Christopher Dube said the master plan was adopted after consultations were conducted in line with the Regional, Town and planning Act.
“It is hereby notified in terms of subsection (2) of section 15 of the Regional, Town and Country Planning Act Revised 1996 as read with Section 8 of the Regional, Town and Country Planning (Master and Local Plans) Regulations 1977 that the City of Bulawayo has adopted the Bulawayo Master Plan 2019-34 and is now on public exhibition until January 3, 2022,” Dube said.
Residents, stakeholders and various organisations with objections to the plan have been given up to January 17, 2022 to lodge their objections in writing with the town clerk.
The areas to be covered by the master plan include the whole of Bulawayo municipal area, about 64 300 hectares and an additional 13, 145 hectares from adjacent properties under the Umguza Rural District Council.
Some of the specific areas targeted by the master plan are South Central that comprises the suburbs of Famona, Bradfield, South World, Barham Green, Ilanda, Malindela, Greenhill, and Morningsdale among others.
Bulawayo Progressive Residents Association chairman Ambrose Sibindi said residents were hopeful that the development plan would serve their interests.
“We hope that the development plan will serve residents’ interests and refurbish old infrastructure,” Sibindi said.
Under the new development plan, Bulawayo will have an integrated master plan, a strategic plan and waste and water master plan, which will be implemented based on funding from donor agencies such as the United Nations and United States Agency for International Development.
The local authority has on several occasions announced that it will come up with “master” and “development” plans to position the city to economic growth.
In 2017, BCC revealed plans to produce an economic blueprint aimed at ensuring that it regains its industrial hub status, after suffering years of de-industrialisation.
City fathers argue that there is need for the local authority to prepare and implement an economic blueprint in line with the city’s vision, Bulawayo, City of Kings, Leader in Local Governance with a Vibrant Economy.