The National Plan going ahead to 2030 looks rather promising. We finally have the island zoned after an 18 month study by Messrs. Skidmore, Owing and Merryll, Esq. in which a complete infrastructural revamp is to take place to accommodate the country’s sustained development. I’ve not seen the actual study yet, but from what I read in the newspapers it’s a job well done:
The newly-completed National Plan includes developing ultra-modern transport systems and highway networks, linking self-contained regions with their own health, education, commercial and leisure services.[…]
The zoning will define reclamation lines and identify specific areas for commercial, residential, industrial and tourism development, he told the GDN.[…]
â€œThe plan will shape growth to prevent traffic congestion caused by increased traffic volumes and strengthen linkages throughout the Gulf region, incorporating causeway access from Saudi Arabia to Qatar.â€[…]
â€œAll developments will be undertaken in partnership with the private sector and the government will create an atmosphere whereby the private sector will be able to invest safely and comfortably,â€ he noted.[…]
â€œThe message of the plan is simple: Bahrain has reached a critical juncture and co-ordinated national planning must guide the way to the prosperous, creative and sustainable future Bahrainis expect and deserve.â€[…]
According to a decree issued by the Crown Prince last week, any change to the plan will be carried out with the full co-ordination of the EDB, the National Planning Committee and the municipal council.
Excellent and about time too. Maybe now we can actually have residential areas without bloody sheesha shops polluting the area, haphazard commercial schools and kindergartens within clearly designated housing neighbourhoods which happens because some “entrepreneur” builds a house and then rents it – with apparent full municipal approval – for use as a school, and maybe a real entrepreneurial person or developer can buy land without the threat of that development being surrounded by garages or factories in a very short space of time, etc.
But a the question that remains in my mind is that considering that 97% of the land (and sea?) is in private hands, where will the government find those necessary stretches of lands to develop these promised projects on?