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social infrastructure


Roads and Highways

There are about 775 km of paved roads and 658.37 km unpaved roads. 75 km of the paved roads are main arterial whilst the rest are minor arterial, collectors and local roads.  There is estimated to be 300 – 400kms of formed road not yet engineered or constructed.  Some of the latter form vital missing links in the arterial network.

According to classification of Department of Urban Road 45% of Accra roads are in poor condition. This figure is higher than the national average of 43%. There are 104 Traffic Lights within the Metropolis (Department of Urban Roads, 2002)

Length and Nature of Road Surface
           Paved         Unpaved
  Fig. % Fig. %  
Accra 775 km 54 658.37 km 46 1433.37 km
Country 1935.10 km 47.6 2128.85 km 52.4 4062 km

Department of Urban Road, 2002

Condition of Roads
     Good         Fair   Poor
Accra    28%         27%   45%
Country    26%        31%   43%
Source: Department of Urban Road, 2002

The primary road network in Accra radiates out from the central area (Accra Central – Kwame Nkrumah – Kaneshie Road corridor). It is estimated that about 80% of vehicular traffic has this road corridor as their destination (Department of Urban Roads, 2001).

Almost all the roads in Accra are two-lane single carriageway.  The exceptions are: 
  1. Accra – Tema Motorway from Tetteh Quarshie Circle to Tema (Tetteh Quarshie Circle to Mallam designed as a double carriageway but with only one carriageway constructed).
  2. La Road from Osu Ako-Adjei junction to a point about 1km beyond the Kpeshie Lagoon.
  3. Kwame Nkrumah Avenue from junction with Liberia Road of UTC.
  4. Kaneshie – Mallam Road from Obetsebi Lamptey Circle to  Mallam.
  5. Brewery Road from Obetsebi Lamptey Circle to Accra Brewery.
  6. Achimota Road.
  7. Kanda Highway.
  8. Liberation Road.
(These have two-lane dual carriage except the Kaneshie – Mallam road that has three-lane carriageway.  Service roads are intermittent or non-existent except on the Kaneshie – Mallam Road).

Other carriageways, which are yet to be rehabilitated into dual carriageways, are
  • Castle Road/Adama road (Museum Circle to Kwame Nkrumah Avenue).
  • Kinbu road (Sir C. Quist to Kwame Nkrumah Avenue).
On Going Projects:
  1. Asphaltic overlay of Tetteh Quarshie road 98% completed
  2. Up-grading of Achimota-Haatso road:    95% completed
  3. Sectional resurfacing and rehabilitation of Adenta-Mamfe road:  95% completed.
  4. Construction of Toll Booth on Accra-Tema Motorway:  55% completed 15.12 billion voted for following projects:
  5. Resealing of Sege-Mepe road (17km to 30km) and Sege Lolonya (2km)
  6. Construction of culverts to access roads at Lolonya
  7. Asphalt overlay and signalization of Dzorwulu Junction to Tetteh-Quarshie-Mallam road.
Total cost estimated at ¢4.96 bn.
Following projects have been awarded:
  •  Resealing of Adenta-Dodowa-Trunk Road. (25km)
  • Resealing of Adenta-Dodowa-Trunk Road (60km)
  • Resurfacing and construction of drainage structures on Dodowa-Afienya road 7.5km)
  • Reconstruction of Tenia-Aflao road.
The following projects have commenced:
  • Mallam-Kasoa trunk road
  • Tetteh-Quarshie Inter-change (estimated to cost US $80 million)
  1. Saudi Fund Project Weija and Nima Health centres completed. Madina and Bortiano Health Centres under roofing.
  2. Teshie and Old Ningo Health centres at roofing level, Oyibi Centres awarded on contract.
  3. Physiotherapy Unit block completed at the Tema General Hospital.
  4. A new District Hospital completed and furnished for use at Ada Foah.
  5. Ridge Hospital provided modern Surgical theatre and Dental Unit.
  6. Amasaman Health Centre provided with a theatre.
The following facilities have undergone various types of renovations:
Hospitals -         Achimota and Tema General Hospital

Polyclinics -       La, Maamobi, Mamprobi, and Tema
Health Centres - Amasaman and Ashaiman

Accessibility to health care in the region is also being promoted through a close to client system using the Community Based Health Planning System (CHPS).


Dangme West Health Insurance Scheme is in its second year of operations whilst the Civil Servants and Ghana Health Service Staff Health Insurance Scheme will hopefully be launched within the first quarter of 2003.


  • Hospitals and polyclinics provided with ultrasound machines to improve diagnosis.
  • Hospitals and polyclinics provided with modern X-ray facilities
  • Ridge, Tema General Hospitals and La Polyclinic rehabilitated and Pharmacy Units provided.
  • Specialist services such as Surgery, Obstetrics & Gynaecology and Internal Medicine provided.
  • Health facilities are all running 24-hour service.
  • Quality Assurance Teams established in Hospitals and Polyclinics to ensure improvement   in facilities.
 The Regional Health Directorate has received 7 vehicles within the past 2 years. These have been distributed to various health facilities accordingly, to facilitate and enhance service delivery.

Electricity Supply

The city of Accra is supplied with electricity from the national grid through a bulk supply point (Achimota Sub-Station). The voltage is stepped down from 161kv to 33kv by the Volta River Authority (VRA) (the source of electricity supply in the country) and supplied to Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), which is responsible for distribution through the city.  ECG transmits the electricity to its primary sub-stations at 33kv using both underground cables and overhead networks.

There are fourteen main sub-stations in Accra with ratings ranging from 10MVA to 40MVA.  At main sub-stations, the voltage is stepped down to 11kv and supplied to distribution sub-stations.  Distribution sub-stations in Accra have ratings between 5KVA and 1MVA.  Voltages are stepped down to 23kv and distributed in a network of overhead lines and underground cables.

Use of underground cables for distribution is common only in the oldest parts of the city.  The ECG activity discourages its use in new developments due to the high capital costs.  The 33kv and 11kv networks are generally in good condition and capable of meeting existing demands.

Weija Waterworks
The Weija Waterworks are located 15km west of Accra.  The raw water is drawn from the Densu River impounded by the Weija Dam.  From the intake, the water is pumped to the treatment works via two pumping stations: the old Weija pumping station (German) and the new Weija pumping station (Canadian).

The treatment works are located 800m from the dam, on a hill at an elevation of about 100m, and composed of four plants:
  • An abandoned old Works, but whose clear water tank is still in use;
  • The Pintsh-Bamag plant (old works), presently being upgraded,
  • The Candy Patterson plant (old works), also undergoing improvement works,
  • The Adam Clark or Canadian plant (new works).
The combined capacity of the old works will be about 66,000m³/day (14.5 mgd) following upgrading, (1996) plus 63, 000m³/day (14 mgd) supplied by the new works.  The Weija Waterworks supplied only 94, 000m³/d (21 MGD) in 1995, prior to commencement of the upgrading works.

The water is transited by gravity to Accra on the western side of the city.

Transmission from Weija to Accra
Two mains, 300mm dia and 350mm dia. (12”and 14”) directly supply water to areas west of Accra from the clear water tank of the abandoned works at Weija (filled by old works).

Two mains, a 400mm dia. (16”) line and a 525mm dia. (21”) line, deliver water from the old Weija Waterworks to the Accra LPZ distribution network.  These mains are connected to both Mile 4 reservoirs supplying the LPZ, as well as directly to the LPZ distribution network from lines leading to the reservoir.

A set of mains of variable diameter (two 900mm-700mm-500mm) supplies water to Accra from the new Canadian plant.  This pipeline is also connected to the McCarthy Hill reservoir and the Accra terminal reservoir, but due to insufficient supply, no water reaches these two reservoirs from this main.

Secondary Transmissions
From the HPZ reservoirs, the Legon booster station pumps water into the Legon reservoir, which serves the University Campus.

From the McCarthy Hill reservoir, the McCarthy Hill booster station feeds an elevated tank, which supplies areas on top of the hill.

Kpong-Akuse Reservoir
The Volta River Basin is the largest basin in the country.  It drains an area of 397,390km², of which 168,372km² lies within Ghana; it is dammed at Akosombo for hydro-electric power, creating a reservoir of a total capacity of 148,017 Mm², covering an area of 8,482km² at its normal level, and with a live volume of 60,000 mm² at this level.

The results of the Study show the insignificant effect of the water drawn off between Akosombo and Kpong (less than 1% of the water released).  The Volta River at Kpong thus has the capacity to supply quantities of water many times over as service area estimated future requirements.

The quality of the Volta River water at Kpong is very good and extensive treatment is therefore unnecessary.

Transmission from Accra Terminal
The Accra terminal reservoir supplies the Accra Low Pressure Zone (LPZ) by gravity via a 800mm (32”) dia, main, and also feeds the Okponglo booster station.

This station has two different sets of pumps, which supply, respectively, the Medium Pressure Zone (MPZ) with its balancing tank at Okponglo, and the High Pressure Zone (HPZ), via the Legon University service reservoir.

The Accra distribution system is divided into three pressure zones:
LPZ:  the Low Pressure Zone covers areas with ground elevations generally between 0    and 30.5m, and is controlled by the water levels in the Weija works storage facilities to the west, in the Accra terminal reservoir (T.W.L of 73.15m) to the north and in the Mile 4 reservoir (T.W.L. of 57.61m) in the centre.

MPZ: The Medium Pressure Zone covers areas with ground elevations generally between 30.5 and 61m, and is theoretically controlled by the MPZ reservoir (T.W.L. of 97.54m), but this reservoir is presently not in use.

HPZ: The High Pressure Zone, covering areas with ground elevations generally above 61m is controlled by the HPZ Reservoir (T.W.L. of 137.15m).

Water Requirements at Target Years 2005 & 2015
This study of production requirements is based on the Average development scenario for future demand, in which demand is expected, to double by the year 2015.  The connection rate (either house or yard) is expected to increase from 45% to 60% (the prevailing rate in 1980), which means that the present number of connections will triple, i.e., there should be 10,000 additional hook-ups each year for the period 1995-2015.

Water Demand And Supply
The present domestic water consumption rates have been estimated on the basis of this survey, dividing households between:

•  those having access to a connection, either in the yard or in the
   house and equipped with a meter in working order,
• Those obtaining supply form a neighbour or public or private

In a shortage situation, which is the case in Accra, demand and consumption are not the same: production is insufficient and/or unequally distributed and customers have less water available than they would like to consume.  Their consumption is “suppressed”.

This being so, water consumption is also tied to criteria other than the availability or non-availability of the resource.

Means of supply
The means of supply, i.e., individual house or yard connection, or standpipe supply is the determining factor in consumption.  A low rate of connection to the system limits the consumption of water, because the majority of consumers must carry the water by bucket or have it delivered.

Similarly, the per capita consumption figure for households with a yard connection, which is synonymous with a rudimentary comfort level (e.g., no flush toilet of shower), is lower than that of households with water in the house. Consumption decreases by 30% form a house connection to a yard connection and by 50% form a yard connection to another means of supply (neighbour, standpipe):

1995 Consumption of Water
Type of consumption % households LCPD

Water cons. million of  M3


House connection

24.7   98     21.6   74,150

Yard connection

19.8   65       9.4   28,483


21.0   34       4.8       -

Private standpipe

29.4   29       7.5       -
Other 52.2   31       1.4       -
Total 100.0   55        69  102,633

District  Communities  Boreholes Hand-dug wells  
Ga          282        120        31 18
Dangbe East          153          10        18 32
Dangbe West          230            4          5 60
Tema Rural            49           - 16 Stand Pipes  -

Urban Water Supply:
In the urban centers particularly Accra and Tema, various measures are being employed by the Government to enhance water supply to residents. These include
  1. Award of contract to Messrs Ballast Medan International of Netherlands for laying of pipes to improve distribution in Western Accra
  2. Award of contract for remedial works at Weija
  3. Relocation of utility mains along some major roads of Accra namely
Kwame Nkrumah Circle to Achimota;
Mallam Junction to Kasoa road;
Tetteh Quarshie Cirlce to Pantang and
Achimota to Nsawam Road.
Water mains extensions at Community 8 in Tema and Accra West
A customer without a connection consumes only 30 litters/day of water.  If the customer wishes to increase his consumption to 90 litters/day, he may do so if he obtains a house connection.

“Unsuppressed” demand for water.
Demand at a given target date computed on the basis of unitary allowances tied to the means of supply, to present consumption figures and to the desires for water expressed by customers, and by setting an objective (realistic) for the rate of connection at the project target date.

But what definition can be given to the immediate “Unsuppressed” demand for water when the latter is tied to very restrictive technical limitations such as the means of connection?

Domestic demand
For the year 2002, the “suppressed” water demand (i.e., present day consumption) is 48 million m³ of water per year; the “Unsuppressed” demand is 60 million m³/year. The present water shortage situation would therefore represent around 15% of net annual consumption.

 Non-domestic demand
Consumption and non-domestic water demand (commercial, industrial, public and institutional) is considered together. These customers are generally major consumers who constitute a privileged category already possessing a connection, and who furthermore rarely suffer form shortage in supply because they are located in sectors in which water is distributed in priority or they have compensated for this situation (large capacity private storage facilities).

“Unsuppressed” water demand in 2005
2005 constitutes an intermediate step between 1995, the year the study began, and the 2015 project target date.  In the Socio-Economic survey, domestic water demand for the year 2005 was computed by exponential interpolation of consumption for the year 1995 and demand for the year 2015.

If consumption in 1995 in this calculation is replaced by unsuppressed demand in 1995, the results of the interpolation for the year 2005 increase slightly, from 67.7Mm³/year to 72.5Mm³/year for domestic demand.

Evolution of Non-Revenue Water
Only the problem of physical losses and their evolution in time are considered here because commercial losses, which result from the inability to correctly account for water effectively consumed because of illegal connections, or meters in a poor state of repair or their absence, cannot be included in computing production requirements, which result form the addition of two components: net consumption and physical losses (leaks). The water lost by leakage is estimated at 30% on the average for the entire supply system in Accra.

By carrying out a leak detection and repair program for major leaks in a deteriorated network, this percentage can be lowered to around 25% without too much effort, and constitutes an interesting alternative to all other operations aimed at increasing production.

A decrease by 5% in the leakage rate would allow for saving around 30 000m3 of water per day, representing considerable savings in terms of both investment (the construction of an additional production/transfer/storage unit of 30 000m3/day capacity), and operating expenses (treatment and pumping 30 000m3/day of water over the entire year).

Seasonal Peak Demand
Over the years the demand for water varies by +/-10% around these average values, and the total production capacity must therefore be such that the seasonal peak demand can be covered.

Electricity Company of Ghana embarking on a ¢6bn rehabilitation project for all street lights along the 27 Ceremonial Roads in the City of Accra.


Telephone and Communication services until recently have been entirely the responsibility of the Ghana Telecommunication Company (GT). The GT has seven district telephone areas namely Accra North, Accra Central, Cantonments, Teshie-Nungua, Dansoman, Achimota and Madina.  Each telephone area comprises a telephone exchange and local distribution network.  Radio transmissions systems have been recently introduced in the city through the Dansoman and Achimota exchanges.

GT is the only utility agency that has gone into private partnership.  Presently there are  three private companies operating mobile telephone facilities in the city.  In spite of this network telephone service is still in high demand. The quality of service over the last five years has improved in spite of foreign exchange constraints.

The Architectural and Engineering Services Corporation (AESC) is responsible for primary drainage in the metropolitan area.   Ghana Highway Authority has responsibility of drainage associated with major roads.  There is a well-established network of primary drains within the metropolitan area. 

However, the maintenance of primary drains, careless dumping of rubbish into drainage systems and poor development control has created severe flooding, siltation and pollution problems in many parts of the metropolitan area.

The Roads Department of AMA currently takes responsibility for constructing and clearing local drains.  An integrated Master Plan has been completed for the Accra Metropolitan Area.  The plan is to assist with the design of culverts and other drainage structures associated with drainage improvements programme currently going on in Accra.

Under the Government’s Emergency Social Relief Programme about ¢434 m disbursed to some small scale fish smokers at James Town, Chorkor and Gbebeyise.


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