He continued: “The recognition of the benefits of engaging with communities especially in cities is becoming an integral element in ensuring that all members of society are represented. The role of citizens cannot be understated in the master-planning process, to ensure that the city plans represent their views and ambitions.”
“Citizen engagement must not be seen as a tick-box exercise, which rarely harnesses results. City plans that fully embrace the community’s feedback and knowledge are able to gain a true understanding of real issues at hand,” he said.
He also noted: “There are many different tools that should be used when gathering views from communities, such as interactive workshops, focus groups, expert meetings, local community presentations and engagements, whereby citizens are able to identify thematically, technically, and visually priorities they would like the planning exercise to consider. Each approach, naturally, requires a varying level of communication, including digital technologies, such as text message surveys, social media etc. which can be critical tools in reducing the time commitment needed from stakeholders and citizens.”
He concluded: To achieve a successful Physical Masterplan in Ibadan, it will require a careful balance of both top-down and bottom-up approaches to improve the potential opportunity of creating a city that is vibrant, resilient, and inclusive; essential elements to create cities that can lead efforts of reducing poverty and boosting shared prosperity.