PROBLEMS OF TOWN PLANNING DEVELOPMENT IN ABAKPA NIKE ENUGU NIGERIA
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Town planning is a technical and political process concerned with the development and use of land, protection and use of the environment, public welfare, and the design of the urban environment, including air, water, and the infrastructure passing into and out of urban areas such as transportation, communications, and distribution networks. It can be referred to asurban and regional, regional, town, city, rural planningor some combination in various areas worldwide. Town planning takes many forms and it can share perspectives and practices with urban design (Robert, 2010). Town planning development is the process of developing urban, suburban and rural areas orderly. Although predominantly concerned with the planning of settlements and communities, town planning is also responsible for the planning and development of water use and resources, rural and agricultural land, parks and conserving areas of natural environmental significance. The major reason for town planning is urbanization.
Urbanization is not a recent phenomenon in Nigeria. Indeed many ancient cities such as Enugu, Ile Ife, Kano, Ibadan, Benin and Sokoto have had a rich history of urbanization. Urbanization however increased significantly during the colonial administrations. It is apparent that the rate of urbanization in recent period has been vigorous, alarming and unsustainable. The most serious problems confronting cities, towns and their inhabitants as identified in Agenda (2010) include the following: Inadequate financial resources, lack of employment opportunities, spreading homelessness and expansion of squatter settlements, increased poverty and a widening gap between the rich and poor, growing insecurity and rising crime rates, inadequate and deteriorating building stock, services and infrastructure. Other problems include lack of health and educational facilities, improper land use, insecure land tenure, rising traffic congestion, increasing pollution, lack of green spaces, inadequate water supply and sanitation, uncoordinated urban development and an increasing vulnerability to disaster. All these have seriously challenged the town planning development in place like Abakpa Nike. The capacity of government at all levels to realize socio- economic development and environmental protection, which is all components of sustainable development, is also challenged.
Nigeria as a nation has been experiencing an accelerated shift of her populations from rural to urban areas. This rapid rate of urbanization has engendered several challenges and problems in town planning development similar to situations in other parts of the world. The problems identified in Agenda (2010) are prevalent in Enugu state. Today’s Enugu city, according to Mabogunje (2012) is typified by substandard and inadequate housing, slums, and lack of infrastructure, transportation problems, low productivity, poverty, crime and juvenile delinquency. Urbanization, according to him is the root cause of the high rates of environmental degradation, pollution and social delinquency.
In order to address the problem of town planning development and promote sustainable development, the United Nations Millennium Declaration was adopted in September 2000, committing countries both rich and poor to do all they can to eradicate poverty, promote human dignity and equality and achieve peace, democracy and environmental stability. The goals include those dedicated to eradicating poverty, achieving universal primary education, promoting gender equality, reducing child mortality, improving maternal health, combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases, ensuring environmental sustainability and developing a global partnership for development. Nigeria is a signatory to the Millennium Declaration and has a responsibility to implement the goals. Various scholars have studied the challenges of town planning development in Nigeria. Some of them include Falade (1999) whose study focused on the challenges of a sustainable Nigeria, Abumere (2002) whose research centered on urban governance and the challenges of urban poverty, Odeyemi (2002) who did a study on gender and urbanization and Olanrewaju (2003) who focused on sustainability and urban poverty. However, since urban development occurs in a continuum, this paper focuses on the problems of town planning development in Abakpa Nike Enugu Nigeria.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Town planning development control is one of the measures applied by physical planning agencies, town planners particularly, local planning authority. The town planning has also been linked to poverty reduction and innovation. Almost universally, access to basic urban services such as health, education, water, sanitation and electricity are higher in urban areas than in rural areas and are higher in larger urban areas than in smaller urban areas. With the increasing population explosions and massive rural-urban migration accompanying the urbanization process in the developing cities, global economic integration, increased international trade, capital flows, telecommunication, new waves of technologies, and shifts in the comparative advantage of production continue to play a central role in integrating major urban centers and shaping the spatial organization of the cities (Jiboye, 2010).
Oyesiku (2011) opined that the pressure created by population growth from natural increase and migration on little investment in infrastructure and services in Nigerian cities is indeed so great that declines in quality and quantity of these are inevitable. This emigrational factor often results to over urbanization, which constitutes a “strike back” effect on the environment. (Awosusi and Jegede 2013). The study examines the problems of town planning development and sustainability in Nigeria, and analyzes the implementation of some suggested ways targeted with emphasis on Abakpa Nike Enugu state, Nigeria.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The aim of this project is to present a study on the problems of town planning development in Abakpa Enugu. Therefore, the specific objectives are as follows;
1. To assess the level of town planning development in Abakpa Nike Enugu
2. To find out the authorities involved in town planning in Abakpa Nike Enugu
3. To find out the problems of town planning development in Abakpa Enugu
4. To suggest ways that will help control and sustain town planning development in Abakpa Enugu.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. What is the level of town planning development in Abakpa Nike Enugu?
2. Who are the authorities involved in town planning in Abakpa Nike Enugu?
3. What are the problems of town planning development in Abakpa Enugu?
4. What are the ways that will help control and sustain town planning development in Abakpa Enugu?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The importance of the study cannot be overemphasized. This is because the benefits accrued to sustainable town planning and development can be felt when there is proper land use and town planning. Also, the authorities will be aware of the various problems and get solutions to them through this study. This will benefit the public as they will live conveniently without complain of bad drainages, improper town planning, adequate infrastructures etc. Finally, it will benefit students who intends to carryout similar research as it will serve as a secondary material for the student.