Botswana: The Department of Town and Country Planning (DTCP) held a press conference on Tuesday to engage the media, as well as the general public, on Spatial Planning in the Transitional National Development Plan (TNDP) and its facilitation in the allocation of land.
When making welcome remarks Chief Planner, Spatial Planning, Ms Mosetsanagape H. Motsewabathata, explained that the Department of Town and Country Planning (DTCP) is one of the departments under the Ministry of Lands and Water Affairs established in 1972 with the responsibility to facilitate orderly and sustainable spatial development in Botswana.
She mentioned that the core business of the Department is undertaken through four planning levels being; national planning, regional planning, settlement planning and local planning.
Ms Motsewabathata indicated that some functions of the Department have been decentralised to the district and urban councils. Furthermore, the Department has also placed Officers at the Land Boards (lands officers) and is currently in the process of establishing physical planning units at the Land Boards to drive its mandate.
Addressing the media, Department of Town and Country Planning, Acting Director Mr Kebonyemodisa Ooke explained that spatial planning is guided by the National Spatial Plan, which is a framework that aims to influence spatial development in order to promote equitable social development, promote vibrant economic growth, and maintain a sustainable environment.
He further explained that the National Spatial Plan (NSP) had established 11 new planning regions in Botswana, which helped achieve a more balanced spatial distribution of Botswana’s population. Planning regions will therefore be used to plan for future population distribution and ensure that they have good access to services.
Mr Ooke said that the Department is currently undertaking Spatial Development projects which include Serowe, Mahalapye Palapye Regional Plan, the Gaborone expansion plan and the Segoditshane region master plan. He noted that the plans aim to address existing land challenges and ultimately avail land for allocation for Batswana.
When addressing the media on the Segoditshane Master plan, Mr Ooke indicated that the Master Plan aims to provide Gaborone with a meaningful waterfront environment along the Segoditshane River banks and redefine the spatial identity of Gaborone around the river. Furthermore, he narrated that around 400 mixed-use plots will be allocated along the Segoditshane River.
For her closing remarks, Chief Planner, Policy and research Ms Doreen B.Kenaleeng thanked the media for their turn up at the press conference, he further urged the media to reach out to the Department for more information so as to share with the public.