Pakistanis are flocking to cities at a quicker rate than any other country in South Asia, with an urban population expanding at a rate of 3% each year. More than half of Pakistan’s 250 million people are estimated to live in cities by 2030. Urbanisation, on the other hand, has bloated Pakistan’s largest cities to the point where they are struggling to provide public services and create productive jobs. The most crucial element for any country is to provide services to so many newcomers to the city. Even today, cash-strapped and capacity-constrained city leaders struggle to provide water, energy, housing, healthcare, and education to their burgeoning populations. However, as urban populations grow, this will become even more difficult to do – and the alternative is unfathomable levels of urban squalor, which might well lead to unrest and radicalization. Security is the second key issue. The ramifications for stability are significant when so many people in cities are struggling to obtain essential services, and many are unable to do so. None of it is comforting for a country that already has so many security issues. With that being said, here are some of the biggest challenges of urbanization in Pakistan:
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Poor Living Conditions
With urbanisation comes a slew of additional drawbacks. High rent charges are one of the most notable. When there is a shortage of sufficient housing, landlords or owners of housing facilities raise rents, making it impossible for low-income city people to afford. Because of the costs, even people with a strong salary may have to settle for less expensive lodging options. Also, utilities like water and power may be scarce. Water shortages and power fluctuations are common in some locations due to excessive demand on these resources, which are generally scarce.
Karachi is the world’s only sprawling metropolis without a mass public transportation system. Meanwhile, it is predicted that the cost of private transportation has climbed by more than 100% since 2000. Those who can’t afford to commute are forced to dwell in chaotic inner-city areas. Increased private transportation on city roadways has resulted in significant gridlock. Many urban roadways have been upgraded as a result of the government’s response. However, in Pakistan, infrastructure for the most frequent modes of transportation – such as pedestrian paths and bike lanes – either does not exist or has been intruded upon. Despite the fact that walking accounts for 40% of all journeys in Lahore.
Sanitation is one area that is significantly impacted. The more people in a given location at a given moment, the more difficult it is to keep it clean. Waste management, refuse disposal, and littering, to name a few issues, become a problem. The entire city or town is often vulnerable to disease outbreaks unless there is a proper waste management system in place. Malaria and cholera have recently become devastating illnesses in large cities, spreading like wildfire due to traffic congestion induced by rapid urbanisation.
Street Crime and Robberies
Where do we discover the greatest number of criminals? Where do we hear or see a lot of violence? We’ll take your guess as good as ours. They are mostly found in slums, which are the result of a lack of shelter for many rural people who have moved to cities. When cities grow rapidly, crime rates rise, and the streets become unsafe. Armed robbery, theft, rape, and other forms of violence are on the rise because individuals are desperate for a way to survive, and they often turn to these methods.
When we recognise problems but don’t have any answers, the problems remain unsolved. Stating a few feasible answers could go a long way toward persuading policymakers and other stakeholders to act. It is necessary to have a well-structured urban plan. We must either figure out a method to plan our cities to handle a large number of metropolitan visitors or prepare for an inflow of more rural residents in the near future. If we are to be effectively equipped to meet the demands associated with rising urbanisation, town and city planning is critical. Second, policymakers can take the initiative in drafting regulations and legislation that will govern urban migration. We will be better able to handle increased urbanisation if we provide adequate resources such as dams for hydroelectric power, good drainage systems, and proper waste management systems. We hope that this article by Sigma Properties was useful and adds to your knowledge.
Muhammad Junaid is a senior Analyst and Search Engine Expert. Extensive experience being a lead writer in Sigma Properties |Taj Residencia. Work for years with local and international enterprises. Also, represent well-known brands in the UAE.