Pedestrians First Zambia
Transport and communications play a critical role in the growth and development of Zambia’s economy. Over the period 2010 and 2016 the growth of this sector has averaged above 7 percent. In Zambia, transportation costs are among the highest in the sub-region working against the welfare of people particularly the poor. The 7th National Development Plan recognizes that while transport and communications are critical to economic growth and poverty reduction, if inappropriately designed, transport strategies and programmes result in networks and services that worsen the conditions of the poor, harm the environment, ignore the changing needs of users, and exceed the capacity of public finances to maintain them.
Currently in many of the main cities in Zambia, and especially in Lusaka, pedestrians are relegated to the margin of the roads in dusty and uneven, small dangerous spaces. According to a JICA Household Interview Survey, conducted as part of a Comprehensive Urban Development Plan for Lusaka in 2009, walking is the dominant mode of movement for home-based trips, accounting for 65% of the total daily urban movement, when public transport accounts for 23% and private transport 10%. Zambia has engaged in numerous road development projects; however, these have been designed and constructed without pedestrian walkways or cyclist lanes, even though walking and cycling play a fundamental and unique role in the efficiency of transport systems. Non- motorized transport (NMT) modes provide basic mobility and affordable transport and offers crucial first- and-last mile connectivity to public transport.
Expected Results and Outcomes
The overall goal of the Pedestrians First Project is to contribute to improving sustainable mobility in Zambia to help the most disadvantaged to have access to safe and affordable means of non-motorized transport. This will contribute to the wellbeing and livelihoods of the overall population and will have positive environmental benefits. Safe walking and cycling infrastructure, not only will decrease the cost of transport of the disadvantaged but also, it will, in turn, improve people’s health and have positive benefits on economic productivity. The project will also be a catalyst for converting Lusaka into a livable city that will encourage business investments especially in the tertiary and service sectors, and contribute to reduced carbon emissions. Ultimately, this will contribute to transforming Zambia into a nation of healthy and productive people as outlined in the 2017-2021 7NDP.
The main beneficiaries of this project are marginalized communities who utilize non-motorized transport as a mean to reduce their monthly comminuting expenditures. However the infrastructure will also benefit local a businesses and better off local neighborhoods. Public private partnerships will be pursued to advance the objective of converting Lusaka into a more livable city that upholds principles of sustainable, safe, and livable cities to create triple benefits: improve health and safety of its citizens, protect the environment and mitigate climate change.
United Nations Development Programme
Government of the Republic of Zambia Ministry of Health
Medical Stores Limited Zambia
The Churches Health Association of Zambia
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