(Grant) Ethiopia Urban Expansion Initiative Phase 2



Approval Date
Proposal Focus
Core Focus
Secondary Cities
Country Type


The NYU urban expansion initiative directly supports CA member Ministry of Urban Development and Construction in its portion of the current GOE 5 year Growth and Transformation Program under which MUDHCO and local governments are tasked to supply serviced land required for urban economic and industrial expansion. The initiative also directly supports CA member World Bank’s financing of the Urban Local Government Development Program which now covers the 44 largest secondary cities in Ethiopia with performance based matching grants to improve services and local infrastructure
The Project aims to respond to the most critical challenge of Ethiopian cities which is providing land and infrastructure to their growing population in a planned, sustainable and economically coherent manner. This topic is one of the key agenda points of the country’s urban development strategy. The Project aims to addresses four key governance and city management issues: 1. Ensuring that land is accessible and affordable for the urban population, including the urban poor. 2. Improving the state of infrastructure planning and delivery, that will improve citizen’s access to infrastructure and create a significant amount of construction, management and maintenance jobs. 3. Increasing the cities’ revenue from leasing of urban land and the property tax thus enabling them to finance an increasing number, level and quality of services to their citizens. 4. Improving the overall planning and implementation capacity of cities through a long-term, environmentally sustainable and economically variable planning approach that will take population growth into consideration. The NYU urban expansion initiative directly supports the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing in meeting its’ contribution to the current GOE 5-year Growth and Transformation Program under which MUDH and local governments are tasked to supply serviced land required for urban economic and industrial expansion. The initiative directly links and leverages the World Bank’s financing of the Urban Local Government Development Program (ULGDP II) (which covers the 14 secondary cities identified in this proposal) with performance based matching grants to improve services and local infrastructure. Within this context the proposal is providing preparatory investments to Component 1, Objective 1.2 of the Cities Alliance Ethiopia Country Programme (ECP) Framework document: Institutional capacity and effective, transparent urban land management systems. Objective 1.2 of the ECP aims to support at least four cities to have 25-year climate resilient land expansion plans that include a) new urban boundary b) integration with environmental systems and c) protected urban services expansion grids supporting free, prior, informed consent processes with participating peri-urban and rural communities. While noticeable progress has been made on land administration issues, the ECP notes that Ethiopian city governments have little experience with the management of large scale urban land markets. The project will mobilize international land management expertise to work directly with selected secondary city governments to help design, install and operate comprehensive, modern systems. Four regional capitals have already prepared and received approval for long term urban expansion plans, implemented with support from NYU. Through its partnership with the Ethiopian Civil Service University the proposal also contributes to the increased capacity of cities in developing effective land administration system and equitable land market that is reflected in the ECP. This Project will support Phase II which will focus on four detailed macroblock plans (one in each of the Phase I cities), up to 12 city expansion plans including arterial grid layouts, cost estimates and financing and implementation plans in the newly added 14 cities. These expansion plans will be approved by regional state governments, thereby producing new official boundaries for the participating cities. First year implementation costs will be included in the July 2015 annual capital budgets of the participating cities. In addition, ECSU will be supported to finalize integration of the urban expansion methodology in its urban management curriculum and to export this curriculum to four regional universities.
1. Component Macroblock and urban land expansion plans 1.1 Activity 1.1a) Provide technical and advisory support the four cities to help them prepare local development plans of the first phase expansion blocks taking into consideration strategic issues, concerns and voices of citizens as well as social and economic integration. 1.1b) Provide technical and advisory support the four cities to develop detailed macroblock development plans 1.1c) Establish city urban expansion teams 1.1d) Conduct four initial regional workshops 1.1e) Support the preparation of preliminary expansion plans 1.2 Activity 1.2a) Midterm support mission 1.3 Activity 1.3a) Finalization of expansion plans including costs, implementation plans, and regional approval of new boundaries 1.4 Activity 1.4a) Incorporation of first year expansion plan implementation budgets in city capital investment plans. 2. Component Urban management curriculum 2.1 Activity 2.1a) Support ECSU to finalizes inclusion in urban management curriculum taking real experiences of the participating cities into consideration 2.2 Activity 2.2a) Support the introduction of the urban expansion curriculum in regional universities
Expected Impacts and Results
a) allowing cities to move beyond the current 3-year rolling capital investment planning process to establish new city boundaries adequate to serve growth projected to 2040; b) providing investors with transparent opportunities to lease serviced commercial, industrial and residential land under Ethiopia’s 2011 urban land lease law; c) creating tens of thousands of job opportunities in land servicing, building and housing construction, and service provision; d) enabling cities to introduce appropriate, sustainable local infrastructure drawing on global best practices; e) strengthening cities’ financial bases through predictable land lease income streams and expanding real property tax bases (support for which is already underway through a Gates Foundation grant to MUDHCo now administered by CA); f) providing peri-urban settlers with just compensation, access to valuable urban real property assets, and new investment opportunities; g) providing low income Ethiopians with opportunities to secure affordable long term leases for real assets that will increase in value over time; and, h) allowing cities and other key service providers to secure land required to provide key services.