Constraints to Urban Planning and Management of Secondary Towns in Uganda

Amin Tamale Kiggundu(1*)

(*) Corresponding Author


Many towns in Uganda are growing at an unprecedented rate. By 2030 more than 50% of Ugandans will be
living in urban centres. This rapid growth of urban centres in Uganda provides for economic opportunities for many
urban residents. It also poses various challenges such as urban sprawl, emergence of informal settlements as well as
urban poverty. Over 60% of the urban residents in Uganda live in the informal settlements with no basic services and
infrastructure such as piped water, decent housing, good roads, sewerage systems as well as schools and health centres.
This paper aims to examine and understand the constraints to urban planning and management of secondary towns in
Uganda. Using an eclectic mix of research methods such as face to face interviews targeting key informants, a questionnaire
survey as well as observation, the study found that the current modernist planning approach has not achieved its
intended goal of promoting orderly urban development and improve service delivery in the secondary towns. The study
also revealed that the urban residents are rarely involved in planning. Besides, there is an apparent mismatch between
what is taught at the local planning schools and what is required in terms of planning in the secondary towns. To address
these intractable urban challenges, it is critical that the current planning education and curriculum are reviewed to produce
creative and imaginative planners that can respond more effectively to the community problems, adopt a strategy
to promote strategic spatial planning that is more participatory, carry out public awareness campaigns about the need for
proper planning of towns and adopt a strategy for promoting innovative funding programmes such as municipal bonds,
use of the stock exchange to mobilise the required investable funds, allow the private sector to access institutional funds
such as the employee provident fund and promote public-private partnerships.


Urban planning and management;constraints and secondary towns

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