Integrated resilient development in a coastal city: The case of Accra
The floodwater in Accra, the capital of Ghana, accumulated dramatically in 2015 due to the densification of its drainage networks, waste dumping, and the missing discharge capacity throughout the Odaw Basin. After the floods in 2015, a CityStrength Diagnostic was performed by engaging a wide range of stakeholders and concluded that a programme to improve overall drainage and other structural measures would mitigate flooding and strengthen Accra’s resilience. This momentum later led to the adaption of the Greater Accra Resilient and Integrated Development Project (GARID) in 2019, with a revised closing date in 2025 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
GARID is an international project that aims to improve flood risk management and improve access to basic infrastructure and services in the targeted informal settlements. Although GARID is one of the most up-to-date resilience plans in existence right now, this proposed project and research asks whether GARID enhances regional resilience, considering:
- What strategic components, such as flood mitigation measures and participatory upgrading of flood-prone settlements, could be successfully transferred?
- How can these components could be better integrated?
This project will use a mixed-methods approach involving household surveys, field observation, and unstructured interviews to contextualise the different impacts activated by GARID. Some potential and relevant measurements this project will assess include the number of people provided with improved urban living conditions (e.g., drains, roads, wastewater treatment facility), the percentage of areas with reduced flooding, amongst others.
The insights from this project can help planners and policymakers bridge the gaps between resilience planning and practice for cities sharing similar urban settings.