In about ten days, Brazzaville will host the summit of the three largest tropical forest basins in the world (Congo, Amazon, and Borneo-Mekong). To prepare for this high-profile event, expecting over 1,500 participants, the Congolese capital is undergoing a facelift, including road infrastructure improvements in the city center.
Construction vehicles have been active for days, redeveloping this section. On the same thoroughfare and the adjacent Amilcar Cabral Avenue, work crews are repaving sidewalks or giving new coats of paint to buildings. Further along, the Avenue of the African Union, which is typically poorly lit, is awaiting new streetlights.
Some residents welcome these changes. “It’s a good thing. So what we are doing also benefits us, the city’s citizens. These kinds of improvements benefit many citizens by improving traffic flow and reducing road obstructions,” they say.
However, others see this as patchwork and question why Brazzaville only undergoes renovations before major internationally renowned events. “The problem is that we wait for specific solemn occasions to do it. This should be a routine part of beautifying the city. It’s not normal to wait for special occasions to spruce up the city and pretend that it is,” they lament.
Despite the ongoing work, not all potholes on Brazzaville’s main roads will be repaired.