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Ng’ambo Tuitakayo


ResearchCommunity, Urban planning, Event


2013 - 2016

AAmatters team

Antoni Folkers

Berend van der Lans

Marie Morel

Iga Perzyna

Alexandra Papadaki

Amelie Chauvin

Aurora Kazi Bassett

Nicole Bolomey




City of Amsterdam

Stadsherstel Amsterdam NV

Royal Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Relevant links

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Local news article 1

Local news article 2


#placemaking #intangible heritage #tangible heritage #urban planning #finding stories #bottom up

The Government of Zanzibar has recently developed National Spatial Planning Strategies and is in the process of implementing them. One of the key focuses is to develop specific policy and instruments for urban planning and maintenance based on heritage, since Zanzibar has a rich history that is still clearly demonstrated in tangible and intangible forms. Most significant and world famous is Stone Town, recognised by UNESCO as World Heritage Site. 

Just like Zanzibar, the City of Amsterdam shares the responsibility over a World Heritage Site (the Seventeenth Century Canal Ring). In Amsterdam, a balanced alliance of public and private parties plays an important role in maintaining the historic character of the city while there is space for development. It is a good example of the Historic Urban Landscape (HUL) approach, developed by UNESCO for the regeneration of historic urban areas. The Government of Zanzibar has adopted the HUL approach and aims to implement this. 

Few years ago, Zanzibar and Amsterdam started explorations on collaboration with the aim to assist in the development of policies and instruments for heritage based urban regeneration in Zanzibar. Through action these policies and instruments were further shaped.


Ng’ambo Tuitakayo (Swahili for ‘The Ng’ambo we want’) is one of the projects that was developed from this collaboration. The first explorations were condensed in a pilot project in a small area of Ng’ambo, together with UNESCO in 2014. The HUL methodology - a holistic and integrated approach for heritage based urban regeneration – was tested through workshops with the community and led to a basis for upscaling the approach for the whole Ng’ambo project area.


In 2015, with support from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, a project was set up between the Government of Zanzibar and the Municipality of Amsterdam that aimed to develop a Local Area Plan and Structure Plan for Ng’ambo on the basis of the HUL approach.


Ng'ambo Tuitakayo involved resident communities and all relevant stakeholders in the area just outside of Stone Town in the development of the Local Area Plan for the area that in the recently developed Master Plan for Zanzibar is earmarked as future city centre of Zanzibar.


The first months were used for an intensive mapping exercise that formed a first basis for the plan. After the symposium ‘Finding Stories’, that was organised in connection with a workshop in Amsterdam in January 2016 and brought together experts on implementation of community consultation, the intangible mapping exercise was rolled out.


The Local Area Plan has been developed and is presented to the inhabitants of Ng’ambo during a public presentation festival in the heart of the area in June 2016. It has been adopted by the Government of Zanzibar for implementation and is now forming the basis for all future developments in the area. A first important step is the development of the Karume Boulevard following the LAP, with support of the World Bank.

African Architecture Matters was approached to assist in this process and has been coordinating it from the initiation, as well as providing input as a knowledge base. Together with local and international students and graduates from a broad and multi-disciplinary background and employees of the Department of Urban and Rural Planning, a strong project team was formed that contributed to the end results. A steering committee was lead by Mwalim A. Mwalim (Government of Zanzibar) and was consisting further of Dr. Muhammad Juma (director DoURP), Dr. Aart Oxenaar, Ruwan Aluvihare, Keimpe Reitsma, Sabine Gimbrère (all Municipality of Amsterdam) and Paul Morel (Stadsherstel). 

Currently the team is preparing a publication that presents the mapping results of Ng’ambo and the approach that was followed. The Ng’ambo Atlas will be presented in the fall of 2017.

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