The FCT was created in 1976 via Decree No. 6 with the FCDA, as the Sole Agency responsible for the Planning, Design and Administration of the FCT. The Department of Urban & Regional Planning is one of the key Departments in the FCDA charged with the physical planning, and monitoring of land use in the territory. The Department has undergone a lot of transformation over the years, reflecting the scope of services it provides. When created in 1979 it was known as the Department of Planning and Architecture. But by 1982, it had transformed to Planning and Survey. It remained in this form until 1991 when it was renamed Planning, Land & Survey but again in 2001 it again became known as the Department of Planning and Survey. Finally with the latest management reforms of 2004, it is currently known as the Department of Urban & Regional Planning. The Department presently has a staff strength of 110 Technical & Professional staff as well as 53 Administrative staff including those that cover the Zonal Planning offices in the Area Councils of FCT.
The mission statement of the Department is to create an efficient, attractive, livable and functional environment for the sustainable development of an inclusive city through physical planning.
Over the years, in line with the management strides for improvements, the Department has been reorganized to discharge its functions more efficiently. For effective discharge of these responsibilities, the Department operates under a 3 divisional structure as outlined below:
Urban Planning Division: It is responsible for the following: –
- Formulation and Implementation of Urban Development policies in the FCT.
- Preparation of General Land Use Plans for the four Phases of the FCC.
- Preparation of Detailed Site Development Plans and Preliminary Engineering Designs for Sector Centres and Residential District within the phases of the FCC.
- Monitoring of the Master Plans of the FCC with respect to Land Use.
- Revision of Urban Development Standards in the FCC, Abuja and Urban Centres in the FCT.
- Processing and evaluation of all types of applications for development purposes in the FCC.
- Processing of Change of Land Use within the Urban Development Areas of the FCT.
- Regional Planning Division Responsible for the following:
- Formulation of Regional Development policies for FCT.
- Interpretation and Implementation of Regional Development Plans.
- Preparation of the Planning Scheme for Township expansion and development in the Area Councils of FCT.
- Coordinating development initiatives of all mandate Secretariats, Agencies & Departments in the FCT Region.
- Coordinating Inter-Regional Development programmes between FCT and Surrounding states.
- Processing and evaluation of applications for development purposes in the FCT region
- Logistics, Budget & Reserach Division Responsible for the following:
- Initiation and Execution of research studies in the FCT
- Budget preparation, monitoring and control.
- Processing of Tender documents and Departmental periodic progress reports.
- Management of departmental Library and Archives.
- Supervision of Printing & Domestic activities.
- Conducting dignitaries and students on tours of the FCT.
The achievements recorded by the Department so far are quite numerous. They could be summarized as follows:
- The Master Plan of Abuja by IPA completed in 1979 now undergoing review by Messrs. Albert Speers Partners in collaboration with four other Nigerian Town Planning Consultants.(Multi-system Consultant, Austin Aike & Partners Fola Konsult and Benna Associate).
- The Regional Development Plan by Doxiadis Associates completed in 1983, this document eulogizes the socioeconomic opportunities using human and natural resource potentials to formulate far reaching proposals for the territorial development. The document is equally due for review.
- Greater attention to the development of Satellite Towns. The Department embarked upon and concluded the preparation of a Master Plan for six designated satellite towns with a view to decongesting the city of excess population. The Satellite towns are Bwari, Kuje, Kusaki Yanga, Karshi, Kubwa and Dobi.
- The conclusion of the Master plan and preparation of Detailed Site Development Plans of some of the districts has created a large number of developable plots numbering tens of thousands in the Satellite towns of the FCT. With the creation of the STDA to provide complementary infrastructural facilities within the Satellite towns, all immigrants and Developers/Investors have greater opportunity in acquiring developable land within the Satellite Towns. The Consultants, mostly indigenous, completed the work on schedule, at the cost of about N180, 000,000.00 last year.
- The department has continued the progressive Planning & Design of the rest of Phases II & III within the period under review. It also embarked on and concluded a Detailed Land Use and Site Development Plan/Preliminary Engineering Design of Galadimawa, Wumba, Kafe and Saraji Districts in December, 2004. Most of the plots in these Districts have been dedicated to Mass Housing Development. During this period, approvals for the preparation of Land Use and Detailed Site Development Plan for 5 Districts (Okanje, Pyakassa, Lokogoma, Kabusa and Dakwo) 2 Sector Centers (G&H) and Industrial Area (II) (Abuja Technology Village and Nelson Mandela Institute of Science and Technology) was granted to various consulting firms. (Namely- Catech Consultant, Femi Olomola & Co, Urban Development Consortium, Kadiri Associates, Urban Aesthetics Concept, Edres Consultants, Spectroplan Konsult/Mak-Interplan & Associates, Emmary Konsult/Turnkee Development Partners, NigerPlan Consultants and Excelarc Partners). Subsequently, a detailed Land Use and Site Development Planning/Preliminary Engineering Design of these Districts have already been completed. The project is being handled by nine indigenous Consultants at the cost of about N210, 000,000.00.
Another ten sets of Consultants have been selected following due process to further promote the planning and development in the Satellite towns of FCT. In this package, the general Land Use of Phase IV (South) of FCC is being considered for execution along with the Master Plan Review and up-grading plan for blighted dormitory townships which include; Urban Renewal Scheme for Nyanya, Karu Old Townships, Master Plan Review of Dei-Dei, Zuba, Gwagwalada, Kwali and Abaji. Preparation of Master Plan for Technological Park and Film Village, at Sheda. The entire scheme numbering ten will cost a total sum of about N300, 000,000.00 to accomplish. But due to lack of funds only two (2) out of the proposed Ten (10) projects namely the Urban Renewal Scheme for Nyanya and Karu are being executed.
- The Department also collaborated with other departments to accomplish a number of tasks within the period under review. They include:
The enumeration of all squatter and original settlers affected by developments in the FCC around the Karmo, Idu, and Gwagwa axis, as well as Nyanya Labor Camp. This was done with the Department of Development Control
- The selection of resettlement sites outside the city at Shere (Bwari Area Council), Anagada (Gwagwalada Area Council), Wasa (AMAC) earmarked for the resettlement of villages affected by developments within the city in addition to the selection of Relocation Sites at Pegi (Kuje Area Council) and at Kuchiko (Bwari Area Council). This was carried out in collaboration with the Resettlement Department.
- The clearing and relocation of the famous “Bakassi Market” which became a menace and abuse to the beauty of the New Capital City was executed. The market was evacuated from the Central Area of the FCC to the peripheral Area of Dei-Dei Commercial Zone of FCT. This was done with Development Control Department.
- The Department also liaised with AGIS in the inventory of plots and physical development within the Districts of Phases I & II of FCC for purposes of verification.
As a major effort towards educating and enlightening the populace on the activities of the Department, the management undertook a visitation tour of the six Zonal Planning Offices in FCT with a view to improving the awareness of the Chairmen and other Stakeholders on the development policies of FCT.
- Detailed Site Development Plan and Preliminary Engineering Designs for Anagada Satellite Town by Geo-Development Methods Ltd.
- Urban Renewal Plan for Old Karu Township by Environmental Planning Consortium.
- Report of a Final Land Use Plan of Jabi, Kado, Gwarinpa, Dape and Katempe Extension by ONTEC Consultants.
- Detailed Site Development Plan of Institutional and Research District in Phase III (In-house).
- Design of Sector Centres E & F and harmonization of Mbora District (in house).
- Design of Site Yards for Construction companies (in house).
- Projects completed by Albert Spears & Partners.
- Urban Design for Central Area of Abuja
- Metropolitan Public Transportation Concept
- Prototype Subdivision
- Abuja North Phase IV Master Plan
- Departmental Participation in FCTA Committees
- Committee on Site selection for housing of Public Officials
- Committee on Informal Sector Development.
- Committee on the Rationalization of Development along B8/B10 & B6/B12 and the Development of the Boulevard Concept.
- FCTA Committee on the Relocation of the Abuja City Gate.
- Committee on the Identification of Contraventions in Residential Areas of the FCC.
- Committee on the Development of Police Infrastructure in the FCT.
- Committee on the Implementation of Mono Rail in the FCC.
Major Plans for the Future
- Continuation of the Review of the Abuja Master Plan.
- Review of Regional Development Plan.
- Preparation of Land Use Plan and Detailed Site Development Plans of Districts in Phase 4 South FCC.
- Review of some Area Council Master Plans i.e Kwali and Abaji in the FCT.
- Harmonization and updating of existing Commitments and Developments in Zonal Planning areas of the FCT (In-house)
- Detailed Site Plans for new Districts/Neighbourhood Centres in Phase II & III (In-house)
- Design of more Resettlement sites in the FCT.
- Planned Expansion of some major Towns in the FCT (In-house)
- Identification/Design of sites for Mass and low cost Housing Development in Area Councils.