GIS - 05 June, 2013: Stakeholders as well as the general public have up to 19 July 2013 to submit their comments and proposals on the interim draft of the revised Urban Outline Schemes for Mauritius. The review of the Outline planning schemes concerns the five municipalities of Mauritius namely the city of Port Louis and the towns of Beau Bassin/Rose Hill, Quatre Bornes, Vacoas-Phoenix, and Curepipe.
To that effect, a one-day workshop on Outline Planning Schemes for the Urban areas was held today to enable stakeholders from the central and local governments as well as experts from land use and land planning sectors to familiarise themselves with the rationale, approach, content and objectives of the interim draft of the revised Outline Planning Schemes in order to obtain their feedback on the vision, proposals, policies and guidelines in the local plan.
The Minister of Housing and Lands, Dr A. T. Kasenally, opened the workshop this morning in the presence of the Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands, Mr L. H. Aimée, representatives of the African Development Bank (ADB) and the United Nations Development Programme and other personalities.
In his address, the Minister of Housing and Lands highlighted the importance of land use planning as a cornerstone for effective national development towards a modern State namely in contributing to optimise the use of our resources, direct investments in appropriate selected areas and achieve sustainable development for communities. In Mauritius, the Outline Planning Schemes make provisions for the proper planning of roads, buildings and other construction, amenities, public utilities, transport and communication and serve as a tool for guiding and controlling development by the local authorities. According to Dr Kasenally, the present Outline Planning Schemes are obsolete and need revision and adjustments in view of the rapid pace of economic growth, the disastrous effects of climate change, the social aspirations of the population and the safeguard of the interest of the people at large.
Recalling that the Government of Mauritius had received a grant of Rs 30 million from the ADB for the revision of the Outline Planning Schemes, Dr Kasenally said that the financial organisation has extended for an additional year the time frame of the grant assistance to enable completion of the project.
The Minister also stated that though 42% of the citizens live in the major towns, a new trend has settled with population migrating towards better areas along the peripheries making for longer journeys for those commuting to work and leading to increased pollution and traffic jams. He said that this tendency needs to be reversed and towns should be made the preferred location to live and work, thereby relieving our coastal areas of such pressure while encouraging development of coastal tourism.
For his part, the Minister of Local Government and Outer Islands, Mr L. H. Aimée, urged participants to seize the opportunity of the workshop to submit their comments and proposals so as to make sure that the future guidelines and policies of the Outline Planning Schemes are clear for interpretations and implementation. Mr Aimee also highlighted the need for local elected representatives and technicians of local authorities to work together. ‘The Local Government Act 2011 has been revamped’, he told them, ‘allowing for better coordination of activities between people representatives and local authorities so that development is carried out in harmony and in accordance with the towns’ requirements; it is therefore your moral responsibility to take informed decisions and achieved best equilibrium’, he said
Government Information Service, Prime Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website:http://gis.gov.mu