ECONOMYNEXT - A structure plan to expand Sri Lanka's capital into a 'Megapolis' of nine million people by 2040 has proposed a sharp downsizing of a 'port city' to reclaimed out of the sea by Chinese state firm.
A concept plan for the Megapolis developed with Singapore's Surbana Jurong has proposed a 90 hectare city with a marina instead of a 200 plus hectare reclamation protected by a breakwater originally proposed.
"When you say Port City most people refer to the Chinese company that is developing the port city near the South Colombo Port," Megapolis Minister Champika Ranawaka told a business forum on January 22.
"But our port city is bigger. It is a maritime city that is planned from Mutuwal to Wellawatte. The entire area will be developed into one big city, with port related activity.
"So we proposed to the Chinese to company to re-design their port city program to suit our Mega plan."
About 40 hectares of area had already been reclaimed from the sea.
A concept plan for the Western Province Megapolis showed two options which will add either another 44 or 49 hectares incorporating a marina with no outer breakwater.
It will fit with the existing 'Colombo Downtown' instead of being a self-contained area.
"To cater for good connectivity and seamless extension, the development parcels at the Port City are planned based on a grid urban pattern which extends from the existing road network within the downtown area," the concept plan said.
"This grid creates a flexible framework with a series of land parcels that can be combined or sub-divided to meet requirements or cater to changing demands and allow the phasing of developments.
"The Port City will be Sri Lanka’s most exciting and ambitious urban project designed to support continuing growth as a major business and financial hub in South Asia. It will raise the international profile of Sri Lanka while spurring growth and investment."