Viewpoints: Buea, Cameroon and the planning challenges of peri-urban settlements

Jude Ndzifon Kimengsi, Catholic University of Cameroon
Solange Akhere Gwan, University of Oslo, Norway
Elinge Lyonga Emmanuel, Buea City Council, Cameroon

10998056224_446cb7d548_oIn 2009, UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon stated that, “with more than half of the world’s population living in cities today, we are indeed living in an urban century.” Indeed, urbanization is occurring rapidly in the developing world, where cities gain an average of 5 million residents every month (UN-Habitat, 2009). The most visible effect of urban expansion is discernible at the peri-urban environment. In developing countries, peri-urban areas are characterized by fast population growth, a mixture of planned and unplanned settlements, inadequate service infrastructures, environmental and health problems. These present a significant challenge to planners as they struggle to ensure a harmonious development of this zone.

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