Finnish companies are collaborating to design a new urban area in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal, in accordance with sustainable development principles.
Rapid population growth and environmental problems in Nepal mean that a sustainable development solution needs to be created for construction, transport, energy production, and water and waste management.
Senior Scientist Pekka Tuominen from VTT, explained: “The population growth and urbanisation of the region are challenges that require a rapid and sustainable solution. This project is aimed at finding new means that support the settlement of the growing population into new areas in accordance with the principles of sustainable development even in a short timetable. At the moment, only 20% of Nepal’s population live in cities, but this project alone may increase the population of the capital by about a million people.”
The new urban area in Nepal
Mariitta Helineva, an architect from Helin & Co points out, added: “In terms of its goals and scale, the project is unique in Nepal and has also global significance, because the area being planned is quite large and because the urban planning solutions developed in the project will show way for sustainable urban development in developing countries worldwide. We will show how the unofficial expansion of cities without a city plan could be steered more effectively, economically and sustainably into well-designed new areas.”
The project intends to offers solutions to environmental and population growth challenges that the developing world is facing. The results will benefit particularly the inhabitants, the economy, and the environment of Nepal.
Tuominen commented: “According to preliminary results, the development of the area can significantly raise the standard of living of hundreds of thousands of people and enhance their housing conditions. In the target area, special emphasis is placed on education and training in the form of, for example, several technological colleges.”