Access to basic amenities is a major priority for intervention as poor quality of community access infrastructure inhibits travel to basic amenities such as markets, education and health facilities, restricting community’s socio-economic development. Large populations remain isolated and in need of supplementary wage earning opportunities as well as support to livelihood recovery. In many instances the Local government authorities remain powerless to address this situation.
The European Union has funded UNOPS to implement the Community Access Programme (CAP) in Sri Lanka which will rehabilitate 400 km of primary class E and unclassified roads in Ampara district over a period of three years.
As UNOPS and the ILO have been cooperating for implementation of labour based projects in Sri Lanka for over two years, this cooperation is continuing for the CAP through provision of technical assistance for planning services to UNOPS to implement CAP in Ampara district.
The primary objective is to provide a sustainable community based participatory planning mechanism to prioritise (re)construction and maintenance of rural roads to improve access to essential basic services and facilitate local economic development.
This will directly contribute to the policies and strategies of the Government of Sri Lanka “To provide accessibility to all population … and to have high and quality mobility road network for the transportation of passengers and goods”.
The project utilises Integrated Rural Accessibility Planning (IRAP) as the participatory planning tool for investment prioritisation. The IRAP component builds a sustainable planning capacity within the provincial and district planning authorities of Ampara. The planning component complements road rehabilitation and maintenance activities necessary under the CAPs.
The CAP works closely with relevant local authorities and Pradeshiya Sabha’s to transfer a maintenance, implementation and management system for community access infrastructure in Ampara District.
- Is particularly relevant to Sri Lanka as development responsibilities are deferred to local authorities (pradeshiya saba, urban council and municipal council)
- Can be adapted to existing planning systems and supports existing planning decisions by optimizing local authority and community participation.
- Is a flexible planning tool that is easily tailored to collect data and plan interventions for a wide range of accessibility requirements.
- Has three main outputs. It defines the priorities for different sectors, the priority geographical locations for intervention and finally, the most effective design for project intervention (e.g. using labour based procedures or more equipment based).
- Is a holistic area-based planning tool that has been sustainably introduced into many countries of South East Asia, South Asia and Africa.
- Development of a Fund Allocation Model (FAM) to guide broad fund allocation at the Pradeshiya Saba (PS) level for the three years of investment of CAP and to select the most vulnerable local authorities to implement the First Year Investment Plan (FYIP) for road rehabilitation.
- Development of the FYIP and Rapid Prioritisation Exercise
- Production of Accessibility Action Plans (AAPs) for 16 PS divisions ranking priorities for intervention in various sectors including access to infrastructure as well as the requirement for intervention in other sectors such as health, education, markets and drinking water for second and third year investment plans for the CAP.
- Development of the Transport Infrastructure Inventory (TII) for rural roads master plan of Ampara District and establishment of a transport infrastructure management system.