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The design of the Capital City Master Plan has been based on the Government's decision to move the Capital from Dar es Salaam to Dodoma. This will result in the need to accommodate an estimated 31,500 new residents in Dodoma by 1980, consisting of ministries' staff and related service workers, plus their dependents. During the period 1980-1985, an estimated 47,500 additional ministry and related workers and dependents are to be established in the city.
Including Dodoma's existing 45,000 residents, expected to increase at a rate of 6% per year, the Capital's total population in 1985 is anticipated to be in the order of 170,000 people. By the late 1990's, the total population of Dodoma is estimated at about 350,000.
The existing town of Dodoma was finally selected and approved by the Government as the site for the new Capital, after an exhaustive study programme which took place during the second half of 1974. The programme included a series of studies and analyses regarding the Government's requirements, the socio-economic patterns of Tanzania and Dodoma Region and of their peoples, the characteristics of other world capitals and cities, and the natural features and resources of the Dodoma area.
For the purpose of site selection, an area of some 6,475 km2 (2500 square miles), centred on the existing town of Dodoma, was comprehensively analyzed. Six potential sites were initially identified and investigated: as a result, three of these areas were rejected. The remaining three sites, at Dodoma, Ihumwa and Hombolo, were subjected to more detailed evaluations. Finally, the Dodoma site was decided upon as the most appropriate location for the Capital City, while the Ihumwa valley, immediately to its east, would be the area in which the city could further expand, should it ultimately grow beyond a population of half a million.
One of the important reasons for the selection of Dodoma itself, was the fact that the existing town and its infrastructure would be the nucleus from which the new city could grow. Its location on the railway and trunk roads, the local labour force and the availability of housing and other infrastructure would make the task of building a new city much less complex and costly than would be the case with a more remote site. The existence of a town however, presents the challenge to design a plan which will both improve the existing facilities and blend them into a new city about ten times the size of the existing community; accordingly, one of the bases of the plan is the need to integrate as many as possible of Dodoma's existing buildings and facilities in the new Capital City.
The recognition and maintenance of the traditional life styles and social structures of the Tanzanian people was another major basis for the design of the Master Plan. The national heritage of people's relationship to the land, the importance of the family, personal contacts among neighbours, the integration of outdoor and indoor activities in the daily life at home, and the fact that most Tanzanians have always lived in small rural communities, were taken into account in the design of the new city's housing types and residential environment.
The TANU policies of self-reliance and self-help dictate that the urban residents must be given ample opportunities to participate in the construction of their homes and to augment their food supplies. The plan is therefore based on the need to ensure that sufficient land is set aside near the homes for gardens and shambas. And the housing policies and programmes must encompass co-operative and other self-help action.
With respect to the region around the Capital City, the Master Plan's policies and proposals are such that people will be encouraged to continue to live and work in their villages and settlements. To this end, the need to provide improved housing and community facilities, and more and better rural employment opportunities are important basic objectives of the plan.
A highly developed system of public transportation, walkways and bicycle ways in the Capital is essential to avoid the need for private automobiles. The design of the Master Plan is, therefore, entirely based on the principle that all houses, work places and public facilities will always be within easy walking distance from a public transportation stop. This could result in a city which can become a contemporary example of an urban environment which minimizes the high economic and environmental costs associated with cars.
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