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Urbanisation is the increase in proportion of people living in towns and cities.
It's happening all over the world and now more than 50% (3.4 billion people)
of the world's population live in urban areas but this is always increasing.
Large cities in developed countries have been around for centuries but many
cities in developing countries have only recently been developed. Not many
of the population in developing countries live in urban areas, Bangladesh's
urban population being only 25% today. In contrast, most of the population in
developed countries live in urban areas, the UK's urban population being
80%. In 1955, only Europe and North America had an urban population
greater than the rural and in 2005 it was only Latin America that crossed the 50% mark, leaving Asia and Africa well
Rapid Urban Growth
Although LEDCs have a much greater rural population than MEDCs, LEDCs' urbanisation is increasing at much more
rapid rate than MEDCs. In many developing countries cities are growing two
or three times faster than the overall population. Some cities in MEDCs have
had extreme growth rates for example Dhaka in Bangladesh nearly
doubled in population size, gaining around 6 million people, between 1990
and 2000 and Mumbai in India has got a population of over 17 million and is
expected to be the world's second largest city (Tokyo, Japan being the
first) by 2015.
The world's urban population, alike the world's total population, mostly live in developing countries. In 2007, the
developing countries' urban population was around 2.3 billion compared to the 900 million from the more developed
regions. By 2015 it expected that out of the 22 megacities (over 10 million inhabitants) all but five of them will be in
the developing world.
In developing countries rapid urban
growth is due to three factors: rural to urban
migration, natural population increase and
rural areas being re-classed as urban after
being developed and built up. Urban
areas will most likely continue to attract rural
to urban migration. Larger cities offer more
opportunity and a better standard of living.
Why Rapid Growth?
Many people move from rural areas to urban areas to gain a better quality of life and standard of living because of
the opportunities and development available more in urban areas rather than rural areas. In 2000, half of the
population growth was due to rural-to-urban migration.
People hope to achieve a better standard of living in urban areas. The area is probably more modern are there will
be many more services available e.g. health services or buses. Urban areas offer much more opportunities for young
jobless people. Many of the rural to urban migrators are in their 20-30s trying to find jobs. Industry is attracted to
cities because of a larger workforce and better infrastructure than in rural areas. Companies will not travel far too
small rural villages to find a few possible employees when they can go to an easy accessible city which has many
people waiting for jobs. Better schooling and education are available in urban areas compared to rural areas, many
families send their children to cities to receive a good education.
Many rural to urban migrants move to escape the population pressures and environmental deterioration that make in
difficult to survive there. Population growth in rural areas has led to loss of land per family, if a family that owns a
farm has two sons; the farm must then be split in two for the two sons, so each son only gets half the size of the
original farm. Several generations down the line and the amount of farm land per family has decreased dramatically,
making it impossible to feed a family on the small amount of land. Declining soil fertility has led to people moving out,
in rural areas most people are subsistence farmers, poor harvests and crops may mean they have to travel to the city
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As populations grow in rural areas, other necessities
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The deal with the government
and the developers says that if the developers can fit this all into 30 million square feet then they will be awarded
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The government and developers are very concerned about sustainable development. Dharavi has been split into 10
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