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Aceh rebuild omits coastal exclusion zone

PLANS TO introduce a coastal exclusion zone in the tsunamihit Indonesian province of Aceh are expected to be dropped this week, prompting massive rebuilding along the devastated coastline.

Flat-topped 'escape hills' accommodating up to 1,000 people are understood to be proposed in the government's blueprint for the province, to be released this week.

Earthquake-resistant concrete structures, mangrove swamps and an early warning system are also likely to feature in the plan.

Wilson James logistics expert Steve James, who has worked for Save the Children in Aceh since mid-January, said the decision would allow faster reconstruction.

'It's certainly a step in the right direction. People can go in and build their homes and companies can now tender for work, ' said Unsworth.

He said the landscape of provincial capital Banda Aceh had changed since he arrived in January.

'More plant is coming in and more work is being done to move the debris caused by the tsunami. More efforts are being made to create land from the debris.

'The harbour areas are being rebuilt, that's quite evident.

Bridges and roads are still damaged but there's a lot of work being done in that direction.

'The changes are noticeable but quite slow.'

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