Egypt is building a new capital city from scratch – here’s how to avoid inequality and segregation

Nuno Pinto and Aya Badawy (both at University of Manchester) point that Egypt is building a new capital 45 kms outside Cairo.

Egypt is the latest country to build a new capital city from scratch, with ambitions to move parliament away from Cairo as early as summer 2019. With nearly 24m people living in Greater Metropolitan Cairo, the current Egyptian capital suffers from severe congestion and overcrowding – problems which the government claims the new capital will resolve.

Egypt joins more than 30 countries or regional states, which have relocated their seats of power to new cities designed from scratch: Brazil, Australia, Kazakhstan and Nigeria are among the most famous examples. Built on a site located 45 kilometres east of Greater Cairo, the city will feature a new presidential palace, a new parliament, a central bank and business district, an airport and a massive theme park, alongside housing for 6.5m people.

The govt. could have kept the central bank at Cairo to maintain some distance from the government!

They then draw lessons from Brasilia which was developed for similar reason but failed to achieve the objectives:

The excitement of a brand new capital and its image as a clean, organised, smart and sustainable city must not overshadow the need for a balanced, diverse and fair community.

The planners and authorities involved in the new Egyptian capital should look to Brasília: there, it is evident that policies to provide affordable housing and access to jobs and opportunities within the new capital could have avoided the relocation of the poorer in the peripheral satellite cities.

If it’s to succeed, Egypt’s new capital must stick to the principles of an inclusive city, where all citizens can come together and share the city and its opportunities. This was the most important design principle for Costa – but without meaningful policies to support low income residents, it could not endure in the Brasília he so beautifully created.

Hmm..

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


%d bloggers like this: