After the successful caravan event, Enrique Peñalosa and ITDP representatives met with Accra Mayor Solomon Darko. During an eventful discussion, ideas erupted about how to improve quality of life and mobility for Accra residents.
The following day, the Building a New City Conference opened with an introduction by Abass Awolu. Other distinguished guests included Deputy Minister of Transport K. Agyeman-Manu, Minister of Transport Dr. Richard Anane, Mayor of Accra Solomon Darko, Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Hagia Alima Mahama. The conference lasted all day, with sessions focused on improving the current status of transportation in Accra.
During his remarks, Enrique Peñalosa stressed that 80% of the population is poor but the majority of the transport budget is typically spent to improve roads used by the richest 20%. This point caused quite a few questions and comments.
Dr. Richard Anane announced during the conference that Accra has received support from the United Nations Development Program to develop the city’s public transportation system. The city is now pursuing the development of Africa’s first Bus Rapid Transit system. ITDP’s new staff in Ghana will be working with city officials to build on the momentum created by the tour.