Diamniadio

I am not a real tech guru and neither am I very keen on diving into the secret world of plugins that would allow me to share media between two blogs, allthough I must say the idea sounds good. That would, apparently, first require an upgrade of my Worpress subscription to something with a “business” prefix, so instead I have decided to migrate selected posts and photos from my earlier urban adventures to my more generic website which is… here!

So, for some background regarding how the urban world is developing: it appears that for the first time in recorded history, a majority of the world’s population is now classified as urban. The United Nations forecasts that between 2010 and 2050 the urban population in developing countries is likely to almost double from 3.6 billion to 6.7 billion and that about one-third of this growth will occur in just three countries: Nigeria, India, and China, with sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian subcontinent expected to absorb the majority of overall growth. (1)

I’ve switched to thinking about urban space in a more constant manner since very long. A while ago I read in the news by Pressafrik (2) a short piece of news about how the workers in the Senegalese ministries, some of them now located in Diamniadio, have gone on a strike because of their difficult working conditions. Their problem number one is transport, or to be more precise: the lack of it. There are very few bus connections to Diamniadio and due to their schedule the actual working day is cut very short. They also claim not to have running water. What a start.

I drove past Diamniadio the other day and took some photographs from a moving car. The area, some 30 km from Dakar and seen from the motorway still looks like a ghost town but of course it will rapidly change. This is literally an urban space in the making, a city starting from scratch, and it is rather exiting and at the same time daunting to think how soon the empty space between this spot and the outer suburbs of Dakar will be filled with human habitation!

1) Anjali Mahendra and Karen C. Seto: Towards A More Equal City. Upward and Outward Growth: Managing Urban Expansion for More Equitable Cities in the Gobal South. A working paper for World Resources Report. World Resources Institute, 2019.

2) Pressafrik accessed 20 August 2019.

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