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Urbanization and Sustainable Growth. I. Urbanization. Urbanization = the movement of people from rural to urban areas In 1950, 30% of the world’s population was urban, today it’s 49%. In the U.S., 79% of the population lives in urban areas. . I. Urbanization.

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i urbanization
I. Urbanization
  • Urbanization= the movement of people from rural to urban areas
  • In 1950, 30% of the world’s population was urban, today it’s 49%. In the U.S., 79% of the population lives in urban areas.
i urbanization1
I. Urbanization

C. Urban areas grow in two ways –

  • Natural Increase – More births than deaths in cities
  • Immigration – Rural residents move to cities in search of jobs, food, housing, educational opportunities, better health care, entertainment, and freedom from religious, racial, and political conflicts.
i urbanization2
I. Urbanization

D. The size of today’s urban centers are unprecedented

E. Today, 18 cities are home to more than 10 million residents (called mega-cities), 15 of them are in developing countries.

F. Hypercities, with more than 20 million people, are the next step

  • So far, just Tokyo, Japan with 26.5 million
  • But by 2015, projections by the U.N. show Mumbai (India), Lagos (Nigeria), Dakar (Bangladesh), and Sao Paulo (Brazil) will all be hypercities
i urbanization3
I. Urbanization

G. Based on this data, Four major trends are apparent with current urban population dynamics:

  • Proportion of the global population living in urban areas is increasing.
  • Urban areas are expanding rapidly in number and size
  • Urban growth is much slower in developed countries than developing countries
  • Poverty is becoming increasingly urbanized, mostly in developing countries.
ii urban and suburban sprawl
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl
  • In the U.S. and other countries, urban sprawl – the growth of low density development on the edge of cities and towns, is eliminating surrounding agricultural and wild lands.
  • Six major factors promoted urban sprawl in the U.S.
  • Ample land was available for cities to expand outward.
ii urban and suburban sprawl1
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl

2. Federal government loan guarantees for new single-family homes for WWII vets stimulated the development of the suburbs in the 1950s.

ii urban and suburban sprawl2
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl

3. Low cost gas and federal and state funding of highways encouraged auto use and the development of outlying tracts of land.

4. Tax laws encourage home ownership

5. Most zoning laws favored large residential lots and separation of residential and commercial areas.

6. Most urban areas consist of multiple political jurisdictions which rarely work together to develop an overall plan to manage commercial growth.

ii urban and suburban sprawl3
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl

C. Basically sprawl is the result of affordable land, autos, cheap gas, and poor urban planning.

D. Formal Definition of sprawl:

1) the spread of low-density urban or suburban development outward from an urban center

  • Physical spread of development is greater than the rate of population growth
people in suburbs take up more space
People in suburbs take up more space

Each person in a suburban region takes up an average of 11 times as much space as does a resident of the city proper

ii urban and suburban sprawl4
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl

E. Issues associated with sprawl:

1) Transportation: people are forced to drive cars

Pressure to own cars and drive greater distances

Increases dependence on nonrenewable petroleum

Lack of mass transit options

More traffic accidents

2) Pollution from sprawl’s effects on transportation

Carbon dioxide, nitrogen- and sulfur-containing air pollutants

Motor oil and road salt from roads and parking lots

ii urban and suburban sprawl5
II. Urban and Suburban Sprawl

3) Health: promotes physical inactivity because driving cars replaces walking

  • Increases obesity and high blood pressure

4) Land use: less land is left as forests, fields, farmland, or ranchland

  • Loss of ecosystem services, recreation, aesthetic beauty, wildlife habitat

5) Economics: drains tax dollars from communities

  • For roads, water and sewer systems, electricity, police and fire services, schools in new developments
iii planning to reduce sprawl
III. Planning to Reduce Sprawl

A. City planning = the professional pursuit that attempts to design cities so as to maximize their efficiency, functionality, and beauty

Planners advise policymakers on development options, transportation needs, public parks, etc.

B. Daniel Burnham’s 1909 Plan of Chicago = the first thorough plan for an American city

c the plan of chicago
C. ThePlan of Chicago

1. Expanded city parks, playgrounds

2. Streamlined traffic systems

3. Removed industry and railroads from Lake Michigan

iii planning to reduce sprawl1
III. Planning to Reduce Sprawl

D. City planning grew throughout 20th century

Expanding urban populations

Decay of inner cities

Wealthier residents fled to suburbs

E. Regional planning = deals with same issues as city planning, but with broader geographic scales that must coordinate with multiple municipal governments

iii planning to reduce sprawl2
III. Planning to Reduce Sprawl

F. Zoning= the practice of classifying areas for different types of development and land use

Can restrict areas to a single use or can allow a combination of residential and commercial use

G. Opponents say that zoning’s government restriction violates individual freedoms

H. Proponents say government can set limits for the good of the community

i urban growth boundaries ugbs
I. Urban growth boundaries (UGBs)

1. Limits sprawl: keeps growth in existing urbanized areas

Revitalize downtowns

Protect farms, forests, and their industries

Ensure urban dwellers some access to open space

2. May reduce infrastructure costs

3. Disadvantages:

Increases housing prices within their boundaries (aka less supply)

Restricts development outside UGB

Increases the density of new housing inside the UGB

Increasing pressure to expand boundaries

iii planning to reduce sprawl3
III. Planning to Reduce Sprawl

J. Smart growth = urban growth boundaries and other land use policies to control growth

K. Proponents promote:

Healthy neighborhoods and communities

Jobs and economic development

Transportation options

Environmental quality

L. Building “up, not out”

Focusing development in existing areas

Favoring multistory shop-houses and high-rises

m principles of smart growth
M. Principles of smart growth
  • Mixed land uses
  • Compact building design
  • Range of housing opportunities and choices
  • Walkable neighborhoods
  • Distinctive, attractive neighborhoods
  • Preserve open space
  • Develop existing communities
  • A variety of transportation choices
  • Predictable development decisions
  • Community collaboration in development decisions
n new urbanism
N. New urbanism

1) New urbanism = neighborhoods are designed on a walkable scale

Homes, businesses, and schools are close together

2) Functional neighborhoods in which most of a family’s needs can be met without the use of a car

o new urbanism in austin
O. New Urbanism in Austin

1. Mueller development in Austin – Mixed use, homes, retail, work places. Green design, green spaces, award winning.

p transit oriented development
P. Transit-oriented development

1. Transit-oriented development = communities arrayed around stops on a major rail transit line

  • People can travel by train and foot alone

2. Zoning rules must cooperate with new urbanism

  • Denser development must be allowed
iv mass transportation
IV. Mass transportation

A. A key in improvement of quality of urban life

B. Options include:

Public buses

Trains and subways

Light rail = smaller rail systems powered by electricity

C. Mass transit is cheaper, more energy efficient, and cleaner and eases traffic congestion

train and bus systems
D. The most-used train systems in the U.S. are in the largest cities

Carry more than 25% of each city’s daily commuters

E. Most countries have bus systems more accessible than in the U.S.

F. Light rail systems are rapidly increasing

Train and bus systems
g problems with mass transport
G. Problems with mass transport

1. Expensive to replace existing roads

2. Types of mass transit differ in their effectiveness

  • Depends on city size, size of the transit system

H. Governments can encourage mass transit

  • Raise fuel taxes
  • Tax inefficient modes of transport
  • Reward carpoolers
  • Encourage bicycle use and bus ridership
  • Charge trucks for road damage
  • Stimulate investment in renewed urban centers
v parks and open spaces
V. Parks and open spaces

A. City dwellers want to escape from noise, commotion, and stress of urban life

B. Natural lands, public parks, and open space provide greenery, scenic beauty, freedom, and recreation

C. Protecting natural lands becomes more important with increased urbanization

  • Because urban dwellers become more isolated and disconnected with nature
city parks
D. City Parks idea originated in America in at the end of the 19th century

1. People wanted to make dirty, crowded cities more livable

2. Began in eastern cities

3. Lawns, groves, and curved pathways originated with European ideals

City parks
v parks and open spaces1
E. Conflicts over park’s intended purposes arose

1. Rich citizens wanted aesthetic “pleasure grounds”

Carriage rides

2. Poor citizens were interested in active recreation


V. Parks and open spaces
v parks and open spaces2
V. Parks and open spaces

F. Frederick Law Olmsted – Founder of Landscape architecture. Designed many famous American Parks – Central Park, U.S. Capital grounds, Boston’s “Green Necklace” series of parks, Stanford University campus green spaces, Prospect Park in Brooklyn

g smaller public spaces are also important
G. Smaller public spaces are also important
  • Small spaces can make a big difference
  • Playgrounds, community gardens
v parks and open spaces3
V. Parks and open spaces

H. Greenways= strips of land that connect parks or neighborhoods

  • Protect water quality
  • Boost property values
  • Corridors for wildlife movement

I. Ecological restoration in cities

  • Enhances “naturalness” of cities
  • San Francisco’s Presidio area is being restored to native dune communities