Solutions to Urbanisation Problems

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Housing Problem Solutions

Self Help Schemes:- The resident is given legal ownership of ther home. This stability means that they will improve thier houses as the money becomes avaliable -> microcredit schemes allow business to thrive

Site and Service Schemes:- Authorities give an individual a site of land and provide the basic supplies like water or electricity. The individual then builds their home and improves it from their own funds

Slum Clearance - Remove the slum and building high rise apartment blocks to rehouse people -> often not enoguh money for this unless done privately

Do Nothing - the squatters stay there and will allow them to improve qualit over time as they establish businesses and community

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The Brown Agenda

...combats the traditinoal issues of limited good quality land, shelter and services like water as well as problems from rapid industrialisation such as toxic waste, water and air pollution, accidents from poor health and safety -> low income groups suffer the most

The empowerment of low-income communities to bring about their own improvemnts is crucial. A suggest mamagement framework is as follows:

  • A basic urban environmental profile undertaken -> public consultation on the issues
  • Political commitment to improve
  • Assessment of risks, impacts and purpose of the strategies -> cost efficiency assessment included
  • Action plans enforced:- specific task forces to target specific districts and/or city wide problems
  • Local support groups should be set up with training for community leaders
  • consultation/involvement at local level is vital
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Calcutta, India

...lies in the Ganges Delta, at the centre of a dense overcrowded rural population. It has a reputation for some of the worst slums in the world...


  • The soils of the delta are fertile, but the area suffers many natural disasters (floods and cyclones) so people flock to the city. 
  • The land is low lying, so many of the squatter settlements flood easily
  • Floodwater brings disease

Solutions - The Calcutta Metropolitan Development authority has tried to improve the infrastructure

  • Improving sewage disposal
  • widening roads and public transport from bustees to the city centre
  • installing street lighting to improve safety and to give some light to people without electricity
  • replacing mudtracks with concrete roads
  • improved water supplies - 1 tap for 25 bustees
  • Reinforcing the river Hooghly's banks away from the low lying land near the river
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Dharavi Slums, Mumbai

...home to 600,000 people in 2kmm2. It lies just north of central mumbai, across the narrow part of the peninsula so growth is restricted


The government is planning for the wholesale development of the Dharavi slum. Housing is set to be cleared in the stages and the population will be rehoused in temporary accomodation.

  • The project can not go ahead unless the majority of registered residents agree - the fear that financial pressure will mean that the planned housing would be replace with more vulnerable developemnts of commercial and office premises for the growing business area. Community leaders claim the government and developers have used underhand tactics to make people sign the agreement
  • The housing will be replaced with 7 storey buildings and any family that has lived in Dharavi since 1995 is given free housing. The rest is to be sold on the free market.
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