An assessment of the causes and impact of road and railway reserves encroachment on service delivery in Kampala Capital City
Wanyama, Peter Paul
MetadataShow full item record
Africa is the fastest urbanizing continent in the world. Paradoxically, urbanization gives rise to urban problems such as slum development, high cost of living, unemployment, shortage of housing, and others. The growth of an urban area due to influx of people in search of employment usually takes its toll on the land and the built environment. This is evident by the growth of squatter settlements, illegal occupation of government land and erection of illegal structures on any open space in the city. Road and railway reserves in Kampala district are one of the environments that are prone to encroachers due to increasing population in the city and need for more land for settlement and business activities, farming inclusive. This is the core of this research; it seeks to determine the impacts of this unplanned growth. The study assessed the causes and impacts of road and railway reserve encroachment on service delivery in Kampala District. The study had the following study objectives: To establish the type, nature and extent of railway and road reserves encroachment in Kampala City; To find out the factors leading to increased encroachment on road and railway reserves in Kampala city; To examine the impact of road and railway reserve encroachment on the delivery of services in Kampala City; and To identify the gaps in the current approaches and /or mechanisms used by road and railway management authorities in protecting reserves from further encroachment. Data were collected using questionnaires and interviews of the stakeholders as well as assessment and review of information available on encroachment. Staff of UNRA, RVR and KCCA were the main respondents interviewed. The local people such as church leaders, LC officials, ordinary people, opinion leaders and community development officers were also interviewed and provided supplementary information. The data were analyzed using mixed methods. Frequency-percentage tables, bar graphs and pie charts were used in analyzing quantitative data while narrative text was used in analyzing qualitative data. Study findings revealed that road and railway reserves were encroached on by settlements, farming activities as well as other forms of informal businesses such as vending and tree nurseries. The causes of the encroachment were attributed to shortage of housing facilities, eviction of street vendors, laxity in the enforcement of regulations governing road and railway reserves among others. The study findings further showed that the increase in the cases of encroachment affected the quality of service delivery. For example, it affected the flow of traffic and caused flooding due to clogging of drainage channels. The study further observed that while mechanisms have been formulated to protect the reserves, a number of loopholes existed in their implementation. For example, the TV messages were played at odd hours. The study concluded that the increased encroachment on road and railway reserves has affected the quality of service delivery. The study recommended the need for management of the road and railway infrastructure to engage the services of the local people, need for carrying regular inspections and need for amending the weak laws and associated penalties among others.