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1. INTRODUCTION Regional planning is a branch of land use planning and deals with the efficient placement of land use activities, infrastructure and settlement growth across a significantly larger area of land than an individual city or town. Regional planning addresses problems of economic, social and political transformations at geographical scales greater than a municipality, state or even

country. The region is connected and united by cultural identity, economic interests, geographic features, as well as common developmental and environmental concerns. Since the independence, the need for regional planning has arisen from changing social and economic phenomena affecting local communities and regions throughout the country.

2. AIM OF REGIONAL PLANNING a) Utilizing Resources in an optimal manner so as to realize the development potential of the region over a given time-frame with minimal negative impacts in order to achieve economic-equity. b) Securing the planning and equitable distribution of population and economic resources of a country. c) The task of arranging the available land in a pattern which is most profitable and productive to the region and the country at large. d) Allocation of certain basic resources to generate economic activity in backward regions for stabilization of their economy by planning an adequate number of medium sized towns and to provide them with services, employment, and social and cultural facilities. e) Preventing irregular and unhealthy urban expansion.

3. PRINCIPLES OF REGIONAL PLANNING Specific interventions and solutions will depend entirely on the needs of each region in each country, but generally speaking, regional planning at the macro level will seek to: Resist development in flood plains or along earthquake faults. These areas may be utilized as parks, or unimproved farmland. 2) Designate transportation corridors using hubs and spokes and considering major new infrastructure.
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3) Some thought into the various ‘role’s settlements in the region may play, for example some may be administrative, with others based upon manufacturing or transport. 4) Consider designating essential nuisance land uses locations, including waste disposal. 5) Designate Green belt land or similar to resist settlement amalgamation and protect the environment. 6) Set regional level ‘policy’ and zoning which encourages a mix of housing values and communities. 7) Consider building codes, zoning laws and policies that encourage the best use of the land.

4. APPROACHES TO REGIONAL PLANNING The approach to regional planning can be either 'total' or 'selective'. In the total regional planning approach an attempt is made to develop all regions of an economy, while in the selective approach the attention is concentrated on the development of some regions only. However, this differentiation between the 'total' and 'selective' approaches is possible only in the context of an economy where no national planning exists. In most of the underdeveloped countries, there is some sort of planning for all regions, at least in the overall framework of a national plan. Under these circumstances, it is better to define the total regional planning approach as the one which aims at equal development rates for all regions of the economy by providing equal investment in all of them. The selective regional planning approach will then be one that aims at unequal development rates for the different regions of the economy by providing unequal investments in them. When we talk of equal investment, we mean equal investment in relation to the size of the region (size can be determined in relation to either area or population or both). Thus, if region 1 is double the size of region 2, it receives investment twice as much compared with region 2. This is necessary, for otherwise equal investment will, in fact, imply unequal investments, as is fairly obvious. For example, if regions 1 and 2 receive the same investment, it clearly amounts to discrimination in favor of region 2. As for the choice between the total regional planning approach and the selective regional planning approach, it is easy to see that the resources required by

the former in terms of funds, physical resources, entrepreneurial and managerial skills, technical capabilities, etc., will be beyond the reach of an underdeveloped country. Therefore, an underdeveloped country has, of necessity, to rely on the selective approach in its regional planning strategy. Under such an approach it will devote more resources to the development of some regions and less resource to the development of others. The advantages of selective approach are many: a) Different kind of regions for different purposes can be designated b) A loose delineation of regional boundaries can be adopted so that they can be changed whenever required (this introduces an element of flexibility in planning process) c) The regional effort can be largely dropped when the purpose has been largely accomplished. d) Fewer planning personnel and organization resources are required, and the available ones can be shifted from region to region as situation changes.

According to Perloff (economist at University of California), the selection of region for special attention will in general, be guided by the following factors:
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The possibility of developing an outstanding untapped resource, even of a limited type, such as a multipurpose river basin development. The solution to a severe and nationally threatening problem, such as an extremely depressed area, a culturally backward area not in the national mainstream, or an area threatening to break away politically. A combination of both significant potentials and tough problems, such as planning of major metropolitan regions.

Though the adoption of the selective approach, a country can concentrate more on the lagging regions and help them develop at a faster rate than other regions. As a consequence of this policy, employment opportunities will expand in

backward regions, per capita income will increase and the incentive to migrate to prosperous regions will decline. This will also be the advantage to the prosperous region in long run.

5. REGIONAL DISPARITIES Regional inequalities existed in all countries at all times and it will be ridiculous to expect that they can be abolished altogether. Complete equality among regions is not possible because resources and human skills are unevenly distributed over the different regions of a country and mobility of factors is imperfect. Thus, even in USA, there is a vast underdeveloped area known as Appalachia, characterized by rural poverty. In Canada, the maritime provinces, southern part of Italy, northern part of Sweden, large areas in Scotland and Wales of UK, western area of France, northern regions of Finland and Norway: have all lagged considerably behind in the race of development and are designated ‘problem areas’. Because of the widespread poverty and below- subsistence level of existence of the vast majority of people in many backward regions in the underdeveloped countries, the task is twofold: (1) reduction of regional disparities, and (2) ensuring at least a minimum level of subsistence to majority of people inhabiting the backward areas and living below the level of subsistence. If we take example of India, we can say that the states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal which are considered to be industrial states, do not have all their areas developed, instead, there majority of areas are backward areas. The objective of ‘removal of regional inequalities’ should be re-formulated in the Indian context as follows: • Reducing disparities among states • Reducing inequalities among different areas of the same state in such a way that all the inhabitants are ensured a certain minimum level of subsistence. 6. TYPES OF REGIONAL PLANNING The term regional planning can be said as a cover for three different types of planning namely, interregional planning, interlocal planning and locational planning.

Interregional planning deals with overall national planning to promote socioeconomic development of the nation. The interregional planning solves the problem of interregional allocation of tasks – the problem how to outline the role of each region in the formulation and implementation of national objectives. Interlocal planning is done at region (state) level. It has to be developed within the institutional framework of state government. Depending on the social, economical and political structure of the state, the interlocal planning agency formulates different objectives for socio-economic development. The interregional and interlocal planning activities are representing explicit spatial dimensions of the planning system. So, for planning of a particular location, locational planning supports the above two types on the micro level of location.

7. DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES IN REGIONAL PLANNING The main question is how to achieve these objectives in regional development programmers and what strategies could be adopted for that purpose. It is different from region to region depending upon degree of region’s natural endowments, status of its present development problem that may have surfaced and constraints to future development. Yet certain common factors spelt out and the total regions although the total package that may emerge for any particular region will have its own distinctive pattern of contents. These common factors may be stated; 1) Growth in both economic and social terms 2) Human resources assessment both quantitatively and qualitatively 3) Natural resources endowments 4) Development infrastructure 5) Inter-regional linkage and trade-off The development strategies for any particular region would be an admixture of these 5 factors. The features are briefly discussed below. 1) Growth in both economic and social terms: At the national level two distinct situations are possible, one where economic growth has achieved a high level as in the case of advanced countries with high consequent to such economic growth, social development fairly

advanced with high per capita income, and high level of services available to the people. The second situation is that developing countries with low rate of growth, less than adequate level of services which neverthless one being increased by means of appropriate development programmes. In the former case the development strategy, if we may continue to call it development is concerned with sustaining the present high level of growth in the future also and if necessary even bringing down, the high level to level at which the resources of the country would sustain it on a long term basis. In the latter case, namely the developing countries it is the husbanding of the resources and their exploitation so as to make it possible to reach a higher rate of economy growth.

Human Resource

The economic growth possibilities are greatly depends upon the human resources in each region, their present level of capability, equipment and talent and the readiness with which they can be drawn into the programs of accelerated economic development. It is not usual that in the underdeveloped areas, the manpower is very much unprepared for the development task which they have to undertake to achieve rapid growth. This is owing to the migration in the past of talented people to devaluated areas impoverishing the man power in that region and more seriously lack of attention to the development of man power. Therefore manpower development will be the one the key tasks which will determine the successes or otherwise the regional development strategies. In dealing with such manpower planning and developing, it will be necessary to recognize the constraints which the cultural milieu of that area imposes on its developments. A hasty imposition of manpower training programs not geared to those areas specially may tend to break down the traditional and long standing economic and social fabric in those areas and thereby render the human resources incapable of either adopting the traditional pattern or accepting the new pattern with any efficiency or effort. The great sensitivity with which manpower planning and development is developed will largely determine the success of the regional development program. Thus the development of appropriate manpower and skills with indigenous resources will be a crucial aspect of development strategy. 3) Natural Resources endowment

The level of development of any specific region is largely dependent on its resources endowment in terms of cultivable land, forests, water, minerals and so on. The distribution of this resources are not uniform specially in a large regions which are poorly endowed and regions which are richly endowed in degree of endowments the populations in these region can also be rich or poor. 4) Infrastructure Once the economic growth rate is stipulated, a programme for manpower development is evolved and the needed natural endowment is secured through the process of regionalization, the next step in the regional development strategy is to consider infrastructure development within each region. By infrastructure we mean here not merely water, power and transportation requirement but also more important component of the settlement system which serves the need of economic developmental activates and at the same time makes it possible to achieve better social well, energy and transportation requirement and largely governed by the pattern of economic activity envisaged in each region and the infrastructure support which they need.

5) Inter regional linkages At the sub national level it is obvious that we are not dealing with a region as a unit in isolation; there are no barriers across the boundaries of the several region hindering the flow of economic activities and social activities. Population and essentially dealing with a very fluid unit and regional development strategy must recognize the dynamite of the situation and appropriately provide for it. In fact this dynamism is of utmost important as it provides for inter regional exchanges and thereby helps to even out the differences that may be there because of different patterns not being the same in all the achievement of a satisfactory mix of goods and services to be provided to the people of each region and this can be achieved through only multi lateral exchange amongst the different regions. There may be a tendency for inter directions only and that would go against the policy of balanced growth. The regional development strategy must foresee such trends and structure the production pattern so as to ensure that flows are evenly distributed in multi lateral direction.

8. SUMMARY It has been brought out that major of the existing approaches are largely meant for industrialized and urbanized societies. So, this urban-industrial bias should be corrected to suit the rural and agricultural context of developing societies, else planning won’t be able to reach its goals. The old concept of a region being a physical geographical area and having a fixed boundary appears to have given way to more flexible and realistic way of looking at the issue. Regional planning must become a tool for generating rural employment and removing poverty, among the marginalized people in both rural and urban areas, not only for the few who have wealth. The main problem is not the lack of resources but their optimum utilization. The lack of competent people to manage planning and development processes at lower territorial levels is very acute. The skill with the masses is not available in those backward regions. REFERENCES

Chand M. & Puri V.K.(1995),”Regional Planning in India”, Allied Publishers Limited, New Delhi Misra P.R., Urs D.V. & Natraj V.K.(1979),”Regional Planning & National Development”, Vikas Publishing House, New Delhi