Urban Planning and Design Lab Gives Community a Voice in Rwanda’s First Green City Pilot

The Rwanda Green Fund (FONERWA) is hosting an Urban Planning and Design Lab as part of the ongoing development of a groundbreaking Green City Pilot in Kigali. The Urban Lab will give the community and government stakeholders an opportunity to contribute their ideas to the new city extension and is being held from 6-10 May at Onomo Hotel. 
FONERWA, with the financial support of the German Development Cooperation through the KfW Development Bank, is undertaking a feasibility study for the Green Pilot and contracted Sweco, a European engineering and architecture firm, to support the implementation of the project. 
The Green City Pilot, to be located in Kinyinya Sector in Kigali, will showcase sustainable and prosperous urban mixed-use development and is the first of its kind in the country. The outcomes of the Urban Lab will directly support the development of the feasibility study for the Green City Pilot, which will in turn lay the groundwork for the conceptual development and construction of the new and world-class green neighbourhood. 
The Urban Lab serves as a unique platform for the community, partners and stakeholders to give their input into the development of the Green City Pilot and to ensure the project responds to their needs and expectations. As part of the Urban Lab, the Green City Pilot Project Team will also update community members and stakeholders on the status of the project, discuss potential future scenarios for the site and identify an urban planning approach that best suits the local conditions and the ambitions for the Green City Pilot. 
The Urban Lab will produce a visual report that captures the key findings of the discussions and illustrates possible spatial models for urban development in the Green City Pilot. These models will outline the structure, connectivity, environment, building patterns and location of services at the pilot site in Kinyinya Sector and serve as inputs for the design process for the Green City Pilot. The Urban Lab will also define the urban planning, housing, financial, infrastructure, social and environmental and financial requirements of the Green City Pilot. 
The Green City Pilot aims to serve as a blueprint for Rwanda’s green urbanisation and introduce technologies and innovations that can be replicated across the country as Rwanda works to achieve its socio-economic transformation goals. 
The Urban Lab, an initiative of the UN-Habitat, is a tool that creates space for dialogue for different stakeholders to contribute to projects in sustainable urban development. It offers a platform for research, engagement with communities, and producing several tangible outputs needed for the feasibility study and design brief. 
The Rwanda Green Fund (FONERWA) is a ground-breaking environment and climate change investment fund. It is the engine of green growth in Rwanda and serves as an example for what’s possible - in Africa and around the world - in building a green economy.
Germany has been supporting the Rwandan Government in its efforts to reduce poverty since 1963, through Technical and Financial Cooperation as part of the bilateral cooperation between the two countries. GIZ and KfW, the implementing agencies, are working on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in two priority areas: Good governance (decentralization, public financial management and promoting civil society) and sustainable economic development (private sector promotion, vocational education and training and employment promotion). 
KfW Development Bank has been supporting the German Federal Government to achieve its goals in development policy and international development cooperation for more than 50 years. In Rwanda, the KfW Development Bank promotes public financial management and the ambitious decentralisation process by investing in local infrastructure. Further priority areas in Rwanda and across the Great Lakes Region include energy and vocational education. 
Sweco is Europe’s leading architecture and engineering consultancy, it carries out projects in 70 countries annually throughout the world. Sweco plans and designs the communities and cities of the future with a focus on sustainable buildings, efficient infrastructure and access to clean water.