Population distribution and density

People are unevenly distributed around the world. The difference in distribution is measured by comparing population density - the number of people per square kilometre (km²). Population density is determined more by environmental factors which make an area more or less attractive to settlers than by economic development.

Population patterns

A street in Cairo

The way in which people are spread across a given area is known as population distribution. Geographers study population distribution patterns at different scales: local, regional, national, and global. Patterns of population distribution tend to be uneven. For example, in the UK there are more people living in the southeast of England than in Wales. Population density Population density is the average number of people per square kilometre. It is a way of measuring population distribution and shows whether an area is sparsely or densely populated. Population density is calculated using the following formula: Population density = total population ÷ total land area in km²

Population density
The map shows patterns of population density on a global scale. Note that:   Areas of high and low population density are unevenly spread across the world. The majority of places with high population densities are found in thenorthern hemisphere.

Map of the world showing population density

The population density of a country is has very little to do with its level of economic development. For example, both Bangladesh and Japan are very densely populated, but Bangladesh is a LEDC and Japan is a MEDC.

Factors affecting population density
Environmental and human factors affect the spread of people across the world.

The Brahmaputra river in India

Factors attracting settlement 1. Temperate climate, eg the UK. 2. Low-lying flat fertile land, eg the Bangladesh Delta. 3. Good supplies of natural resources, eg building resources.

The Sahara Desert

Factors discouraging settlement 1. Extreme climates, eg Sahara Desert. 2. Mountainous or highland areas, eg the Scottish Highlands. 3. Dense vegetation, eg the Amazon Rainforest. Socio-economic factors Factors such as the availability of jobs and comparatively high wages can contribute to high population density through migration. For example, from 2004 the UK has seen an influx of migrants from countries that have recently joined the EU, such as Poland. Political factors Civil war, eg in the Darfur region of Sudan, can contribute to lower population densities as people become refugees and leave an area.

Population change and structure
Population numbers change over time, influenced by births, deaths and migration into or out of the area. Global population levels, having grown slowly for most of human history, are now rising. Population pyramids show the structure of a population by comparing relative numbers of people in different age groups. Population structures differ markedly between LEDCs and MEDCs. Demographic transition models show population change over time - and also show marked differences between LEDCs and MEDCs.

Global population growth
At present the world's population is growing quickly, though this has not always been the case.      Until the 1800s the world's population grew slowly for thousands of years. In 1820 the world's population reached one billion. In the early 1970s, the world's population reached three billion. In 1999, less than 30 years later, the population doubled to six billion. The global rate of population growth is now one billion every 15 years. The graph shows this pattern of accelerating growth:

. In the UK.the movement of people in and out of an area. Patterns of population growth Rates of population growth vary across the world.death rate The rate of natural increase is given as a percentage.8 = 6 That is 6/1000. while in Germany the population has started to decline. MEDCs have low population growth rates.2025 Causes and rates of change The three main causes of population change are:    Births . for example. population growth is slowing. with low death rates and low birth rates. not all countries are experiencing this growth. then the growth rate = 14 .6%.usually measured using the death rate (number of deaths per 1000 of the population) . Migration . Deaths . calculated by dividing the natural increase by 10. which is equal to 0.usually measured using the birth rate (number of live births per 1000 of the population). Rate of change Births and deaths are natural causes of population change. natural increase = birth rate . The difference between the birth rate and the death rate of a country or place is called the natural increase. The natural increase is calculated by subtracting the death rate from the birth rate.World population growth 500BC . and the death rate is 8 per 1000 population. For example if the birth rate is 14 per 1000 population. Although the world's total population is rising rapidly.

The figures are per 1000 of the population per year. the birth rate is 9/1000 and death rate is death rate. Both birth rates and death rates in LEDCs tend to be high. In South Africa. LEDCs have high population growth rates. Total population rises as death rates fall due to improvements in health care and sanitation. Birth rates remain high. 2. However. Total population is low but it is balanced due to high birth rates and high death rates.Population will decline if death rate is greater than birth rate.9 /1000. The demographic transition model The demographic transition model shows population change over time. . South Africa has an increasing population with a population growth rate of 1%. The table shows data in selected LEDC and MEDC countries. Bulgaria has a declining population. the birth rate is 25/1000 and death rate is 15/1000.9 0. improving healthcare leads to death rates falling .5 LEDCs Country Birth rates 25 Death rates 15 Natural increase 10 Population growth rate (%) 1 South Africa Botswana Zimbabwe 31 29 22 20 9 9 14 0. It is divided into five stages: 1.1 0. It studies how birth rate and death rate affect the total population of a country.while birth rates remain high. MEDCs Country Birth rates UK Canada Bulgaria 11 11 9 Death rates 10 7 14 Natural increase 1 4 -5 Population growth rate (%) 0.4 -0. Population will increase if death rate is less than birth rate. As birth rate is less than the In Bulgaria.

Most texts will now show this stage as it is relevant to an increasing number of MEDCs in the 21st century. In stage 2 they diverge. Total population is still rising rapidly. Total population is high but going into decline due to an ageing population. the total population rises. Most LEDCs are at stage 2 or 3 (with a growing population and a high natural increase).3. but it is balanced by a low birth rate and a low death rate. 5. In stage 3 they converge again. The demographic transition model As populations move through the stages of the model. Limitations of the model The demographic transition model has two limitations: 1. with people opting to have children later in life. Finally in stage 4 the death and birth rates are balanced again but at a much lower level. as the birth rate falls relative to the death rate. Birth control is widely available and there is a desire for smaller families. Conditions might be different for LEDCs in different parts of the world. Total population is high. Most MEDCs are now at stage 4 of the model and some such as Germany have entered stage 5. The gap between birth and death rates narrows due to the availability of contraception and fewer children being needed to work due to the mechanisation of farming. then narrows. There is a continued desire for smaller families. 2. The model was developed after studying the experiences of countries in Western Europe and North America. as the death rate falls relative to the birth rate. 4. The natural increase is high. . In stage 1 the two rates are balanced. As a country passes through the demographic transition model. The original model doesn't take into account the fact that some countries now have a declining population and a 5th stage. the gap between birth rate and death rate first widens.

Looking at the population structure of a place shows how the population is divided up between males and females of different age groups. the right side shows the number of women in each age group.   Population pyramid for the UK 2000 Notice how in the UK 2000 pyramid there is a bulge in the area of the 30-34 and 3539 age groups. for 2000 and in 2025 using projected figures. This matches stage 4 of the demographic transition model. Population structure is usually shown using a population pyramid.Population structure and population pyramids  Population structure means the 'make up' or composition of a population. from a whole continent or country to an individual town. . The left side of each pyramid shows the number of men in each age group. A population pyramid can be drawn up for any area. with the numbers thereafter reducing fairly steadily as the ages increase. The following graphs show the population pyramids of an MEDC (the UK) and an LEDC (Mozambique). city or village.

with the numbers beginning to reduce significantly only after 64. which would be stage 5 in the model. Now compare the UK population pyramids with those for Mozambique: . Here the bulge extends much further. covering the age groups 30-64.Projected population pyramid for the UK 2025 Compare this to the 2025 pyramid.

Population pyramid for Mozambique 2000 In this graph. 4. notice that in 2000 the 0-4 age group contained the largest number of people. Projected population pyramid for Mozambique 2025 . with the numbers thereafter declining steadily as the ages increase. The graph matches stage 1 in the model. 3.

There are usually push factors and pull factors at work. moving from London to Plymouth. social. political or environmental. . and on the place where migrants settle. as a country develops. Analysing population pyramids Key things to know about population pyramids:      The shape of a population pyramid can tell us a lot about an area's population. moving from Mexico to the USA. young dependants (aged below 15) and elderly dependants (aged over 65).In the second graph.for example. It gives us information about birth and death rates as well as life expectancy. the shape changes from triangular to barrel-like. but there are nearly as many people in the 5-29 age groups. How do pyramids change over time?     A population pyramid that is very triangular (eg Mozambique in 2000) shows a population with a high number of young dependants and a low life expectancy. Migration Migration is the movement of people from one place to another. International migration is when people migrate from one country to another . Dependants rely upon the economically active for economic support. whilst many MEDCs have a growing number of elderly dependants. Many LEDCs have a high number of young dependants. Migration impacts on both the place left behind. A population pyramid that has fairly straight sides (more like a barrel) shows a population with a falling birth rate and a rising life expectancy. A population pyramid tells us how many dependants there are. Now the population pyramid matches stage 2. The reasons for migration can be economic. the largest group in Mozambique in 2025 is still the 0-4 age group. Over time. Places with an ageing population and a very low birth rate would have a structure that looks like an upside-down pyramid. What is migration? Illegal immigrants on the American/Mexican border Migration is the movement of people from one place to another.   Internal migration is when people migrate within the same country or region . There are two groups of dependants.for example.

They include:                 Lack of services Lack of safety High crime Crop failure Drought Flooding Poverty war Pull factors are the reasons why people move to a particular area.when someone enters a country.There two key migration terms are:   Emigration . Social migration .moving somewhere for a better quality of life or to be closer to family or friends. Political migration . They include: Higher employment More wealth Better services Good climate Safer.when someone leaves a country. . A refugee is someone who has left their home and does not have a new home to go to. Environmental causes of migration include natural disasters such as flooding. Immigration . Some people choose to migrate. Often refugees do not carry many possessions with them and do not have a clear idea of where they may finally settle.moving to escape political persecution or war. Why do people migrate? People migrate for many different reasons.moving to find work or follow a particular career path. eg someone who moves due to war or famine. These reasons can be classified as economic. Push and pull factors Push factors are the reasons why people leave an area. political or environmental:     Economic migration . Some people are forced to migrate. eg someone who moves to another country to enhance their career opportunities. social. less crime Political stability More fertile land Lower risk from natural hazards Migration usually happens as a result of a combination of these push and pull factors.

. These impacts can be both positive and negative. The table shows how migration from Turkey to Germany affects the two countries.Migration push and pull factors Impacts of migration – economic migrants Migration has an impact on the place that has been left behind as well as on the place that is being migrated to.

Economic migrants – values and attitudes Different groups of people have different interests. Postive impact Germany has gained a source of cheap labour. look at the views of:  The migrant – How do they feel about their new life? How do they feel about leaving their family behind? How do they feel about people in their destination country who may be hostile towards them? The migrant's family left behind – How do they feel about it? Do they see it as a positive move? Will they be better or worse off? The government in the host country – What is their policy on migrants? Are they good or bad for the economy? Are they good or bad for society? Other workers in the host country – How do they feel about the economic migrants? What type of jobs are they taking? Is there competition for jobs?    The impacts of migration – refugees . Turkey Turkey has lost some of its workforce. In the case of economic migrants. Migrants send money home to their families in Turkey.Migration between Turkey and Germany Negative impact Germany Some of the migrants can't speak German and there has been racial tension.

Refugees in Darfur  Refugees are living in cramped and unsanitary conditions. LEDCs have to manage rapid population growth. MEDCs have to manage slow or negative growth and an ageing population. but live in refugee camps. and the refugees from Sudan are putting a strain on already scarce resources.The Darfur region  Many refugees from Darfur have migrated to neighbouring Chad because of the civil war. starvation and malnutrition. and many have lost family members in the conflict or from disease. Chad is one of the poorest countries in the world. the aid efforts are being hampered by the Sudanese government and refugees are dying of disease. Many have also stayed in Sudan. . Managing population change LEDCs and MEDCs face different problems when attempting to manage population change. shelter and medicine. The recent history of population management policies in China illustrates the population change management problems of LEDCs and MEDCs. Water is scarce and most people rely on aid agencies for food. However.

Governments in LEDCs and international bodies and charities are working to reduce birth rates and slow down rates of population growth.Population growth in LEDCs Most LEDCs are experiencing rapid population growth. consider that a growth rate of only 3% will cause the population of a country to double in less than 24 years! Previous Chinese governments had encouraged people to have a lot of children to increase the country's workforce. meant that each couple was allowed just one child. Children are a valuable source of labour and income for a family. including access to education. Most LEDCs are in stage 2 or 3 of the demographic transition model. This means that they have falling death rates. the Chinese government introduced a number of measures to reduce the country's birth rate and slow the population growth rate. which decreed that couples in China could only have one child. Children can help to care for younger children and elderly family members.9% each year. The most important of the new measures was a one-child policy. Causes of population growth in LEDCs  Limited access to family planning services and education about contraception. Contraception and other methods of family planning may not be culturally or religiously acceptable. while birth rates remain high. childcare and health care. It may be traditional or culturally important to have a large family. Those who had more than one child didn't receive these benefits and were fined. High rates of infant mortality (infant deaths) mean that women need to have many children in order to ensure that some survive through to adulthood.  . If this doesn't sound high. The one-child policy    The one-child policy. But by the 1970s the government realised that current rates of population growth would soon become unsustainable. They can work on the land from a young age and as they get older they can earn money in other jobs.     Case study: China Cyclists in Beijing. were offered to families that followed this rule. LEDCs have a high population-growth rate which means that they have many young dependants. established in 1979. China In the late 1970s.  In 1950 the rate of population change in China was 1. Benefits. due to improving health care.

Due to a traditional preference for boys. but not growing. As a result. Most MEDCs are in stage 4 of the demographic transition model . Couples can now apply to have a second child if their first child is a girl. Some countries have a declining population and could be said to be entering stage 5. but remote rural areas have been harder to control. Long-term implications China's one-child policy has been somewhat relaxed in recent years.3 billion in 2008) and China faces new problems:   The falling birth rate is leading to a rise in the relative number of elderly people. In the future China could have an ageing population. Contraception is easily available and well understood. Improved living standards and quality of life. the number of young dependants is falling and the number of elderly dependants is rising. Increased leisure and recreation time. The one-child policy has been enforced strictly in urban areas. the structure of a population changes. This is due to:     Improvements in health care and medicine. and in some cases killed. There appears to be evidence to back up these claims. or if both parents are themselves only-children. An ageing population     As people live longer. There are fewer people of working age to support the growing number of elderly dependants.  The one-child policy was keenly resisted in rural areas. Population change in MEDCs Most MEDCs are experiencing slow rates of population growth and some are experiencing population decline. However there have been negative impacts too. large numbers of female babies have ended up homeless or in orphanages. Birth rates in MEDCs are falling as people choose to have smaller families later in life. Today it is thought that men outnumber women by more than 60 million. the gender balance of the Chinese population has become distorted. it was reported that 90% of foetuses aborted in China were female. In 2000. Many MEDCs are now experiencing a significant increase in the number of elderly people as a proportion of the population. were forced to have an abortion and many women were forcibly sterilised. who became pregnant after they had already had a child.7%. . In the near future this will mean that there are fewer economically active people to support the elderly population. The average life expectancy in MEDCs is rising. This means that the birth rate in their country has fallen below the death rate.the population is high. it still has a very large total population (1. and the rate of population growth is now 0. As birth rates fall and people have smaller families. Improved knowledge about the importance of a balanced diet and regular exercise. where it was traditional to have large families. Most MEDCs have a very low rate of natural increase. Many people claim that some women. Impact of the policy    The birth rate in China has fallen since 1979. While China's population is now rising more slowly.

The reason a settlement was developed or built can be thought of as its function. they encourage people to have more children by offering them benefits. the settlement of Southampton is a port. Facilities such as nursing homes and care workers will be needed. However. What is a settlement Sign at Southampton Docks A settlement is a place where people live. perhaps in preference to schools and nurseries. A settlement may be as small as a single house in a remote area or as a large as a mega city(a city with over 10 million residents). types and locations. An example of a temporary settlement is a refugee camp. some countries adopt a pro-natalist policy that is. Settlement site and situation The piece of land upon which a settlement is built is the settlement site. and its situation in relation to surrounding features. A settlement may be permanent or temporary. You can learn about the history and function of a settlement by studying its shape and size. . What can be done about it?     People are encouraged to save for their retirement in pensions and investments. the result is a settlement hierarchy. This has happened to many refugee camps that have been built in conflict zones. To try to balance out an ageing population. The retirement age is increasing. as the population gets older. such as access to childcare and maternity leave. If you group and classify settlements according to their size and shape. its placement in the landscape. Settlement characteristics Settlements come in different sizes. For example. a temporary settlement may become permanent over time. Coping with an ageing population in the UK What are the issues?  There are decreasing numbers of economically active people in the population and more elderly dependents. Economically active skilled and unskilled migrants could be encouraged.

eg Durham. Many settlements grew around wet point sites.There are many reasons why a site might be chosen for the development of a settlement and some factors will be more important than others. or in the loop of a meander. Resources – important for industry. Defensive sites – often found on higher ground so that enemies could be seen from a distance. Shelter – from cold prevailing winds and rain. eg Corfe Castle. railways and canals. Dorset. Trading centres – often settlements grow where natural route ways and rivers meet. How many features can you spot in the map of Southampton below? Some common site factors include:          Wet point sites – these have good water supply. Gap towns – Lincoln is found in a gap between two areas of higher ground. eg villages such as Aberfan in the Welsh valleys close to coal reserves. Dry point sites – these are away from the risk of flooding. . Aspect – settlements are often found on the sunny side of a deep valley. which helps the development of roads. Bridging point – settlements with 'ford' in their name often grew around a fording point or bridging point. eg Watford is found on the River Colne. This is common in settlements in the Alps. eg villages in the South Downs. eg Ely in Cambridgeshire.

With modern settlements remember that decisions about location and situation have been made by planners. For example. Market town – Watford was originally a market town. size and function. its prominence has declined and Sheffield is a thriving multifunctional city. Both are still ports. although it now has many functions and is a commuter settlement for Liverpool. Examples of functions:     Port – the original function of cities such as Liverpool and Southampton. but that their priorities may differ from those that determined the location of a historical settlement like Southampton. most had only one distinct function. a modern settlement does not need to be close to a river because drinking water is now piped to our homes and waterways are no longer important for transport. education and industry. many of which will have an impact on the settlement's type. it is now a thriving multifunctional centre. Settlement functions Most large settlements in MEDCs are multifunctional and perform a range of functions such as retail. Natural resources in the area enabled Sheffield to develop as an important centre in the iron and steel industry. Although steel is still produced. The situation of a settlement is its position in relation to the surrounding human and physical features.The importance of many of these functions diminishes as technological advances enable people to overcome difficulties. Resort – Southport was a popular Victorian seaside resort.   Settlement hierarchies If we group and classify a number of settlements according to their size and shape the result is settlement hierarchy . When settlements first started to grow. and although it still holds a regular market. but this function has diminished in importance and they are now multifunctional. and others developed as the settlement grew.

This means they attract people from a wider area because of the facilities they offer. Large towns.   Pyramid showing relationship between population and services      As you move up the hierarchy. chain stores and hospitals. therefore they will only be found in larger settlements. Larger settlements and conurbations have a much larger sphere of influence than smaller ones. The number of services that a settlement provides increases with settlement size. This means they need a higher number of people to support them and make them profitable. Services such as department stores selling high order goods have a higher threshold than those selling low order goods such as newsagents. . The range of a newspaper is much lower than an item of furniture for example. Often these zones have developed due to a combination of economic and social factors. the size of the settlement and the distance between similar sized settlements increases. The range of a service or product is the maximum distance people are prepared to travel to purchase it. As you can see from the diagram below. doctors and newsagents. Small settlements will only provide low order services such as a post offices. It also means that there are fewer big department stores than small newsagents. eg an airport is separated from a large housing estate. there are more cities than conurbations. more towns than cities and more villages than towns. cities and conurbations will provide low and high order services such as leisure centres. In some cases planners may have tried to separate out some land uses. whereas a small hamlet or village may only have a sphere of influence of a couple of kilometres. Cities such as London have a global sphere of influence. Urban models in MEDCs It is possible in many cities to identify zones with a particular type of land use eg a residential zone.

radiate out from the CBD.The Burgess and Hoyt model Geographers have put together models of land use to show how a 'typical' city is laid out. This model is based on the idea that land values are highest in the centre of a town or city. but adds sectors of similar land uses concentrated in parts of the city.  . high-density buildings being found near thecCBD. Another urban model is The Hoyt model. One of the most famous of these is the Burgess or concentric zone model. eg the factories/industry zone. Many people now choose to live and work outside the city on the urban fringe . This is probably following the line of a main road or a railway. Every city is different. This leads to high-rise. New working and housing trends have emerged since the model was developed. This is based on the circles on the Burgess model. This is because competition is high in the central parts of the settlement. Notice how some zones. There is no such thing as a typical city. with low-density. there are limits to the Burgess model:   The model is now quite old and was developed before the advent of mass car ownership. sparse developments on the edge of the town or city The Burgess model However.a phenomenon that is not reflected in the Burgess model.

eg parks or built facilities such as sports centres Residential .the building of houses and flats.The Hoyt model Central business district The land in urban areas is used for many different purposes:      Leisure and recreation may include open land. Business and commerce . Transport .road and rail networks. Industry . administration. Shopping malls and pedestrian precincts. Bus and railway stations (transport centres).the building of offices.factories. banks. museums and castles. Cultural/historical buildings. town hall (business sector). Offices. warehouses and small production centres. Department stores or specialist shops. Expensive land values. shops and banks. . Birmingham         High/multi-storey buildings. stations and airports. Multi-storey car parks. The following features easily identify the CBD: Bullring Shopping Centre. like jewellers. finance. The Central Business District (CBD) in the city centre is where most business and commerce is located.

Unemployment and other socio-economic problems have led to periods of unrest in many inner city areas. . although the desirability of housing can make some areas expensive. they are detached or semi detached and the roads around them are arranged in cul de sacs and wide avenues. East Sussex The inner city is also known as the 'twilight zone'. It is typically found next to the CBD and has mainly terraced houses in a grid like pattern. Run down terraced housing is often bought by investors and improved to appeal to young professionals who need access to the CBD. Lancashire Suburban houses are usually larger than inner city terraces and most have a garden. The suburbs Semi-detached house in Standish. for example Watford Arches Retail Park. The inner city Terraced houses in Brighton. Land prices are generally cheaper than in the CBD and inner city. think of a city you know.The CBD is located in the centre because it is:    A central location for road/railways to converge. More modern housing estates were built in the late 20th century as towns and cities have continued to grow. eg Toxteth in Liverpool. Many inner city areas declined in the late 20th century and have undergone a period of regeneration in recent years. This is called gentrification. These were originally built to house factory workers who worked in the inner city factories. Many suburbs were built in the UK in the 1930s and have a distinctive style of housing. Accessible to most people for shops and businesses. To help you remember how to identify a CBD. which is located on a former industrial site. as shown in the picture to the right. In your exam give named examples for the features listed above. Many of these factories have now closed down. The most accessible location for workers. Typically.

. Land use in LEDCs Although every LEDC city has its own characteristics. For example. models can be used to illustrate a 'typical' LEDC city. allotments. The urban rural fringe Allotments in Ripon. Urban models in LEDCs LEDCs have similar land-use needs to MEDCs. business parks and airports. North Yorkshire This is found at the edge of a town or city and is where town meets country. The need for another runway continues to cause conflicts of interest. but the pattern of land use in urban areas is different. and they are also within easy reach of the countryside. places of worship and parks are often present. Suburban areas are often home to commuters who need access to the CBD along main roads and railways. and many are served by a local supermarket. The mixture of land use often causes conflict as different groups have different need and interests. golf courses. It is common for this area to have a mixture of land uses such as some housing.Facilities such as schools. building Terminal 5 at Heathrow on the outskirts of London was a source of controversy.

the city centre Sao Paulo . Sao Paulo . Brazil The below pictures show two very different areas of Sao Paulo in Brazil . In LEDCs the poorest housing is found on the edge of the city .the CBD and an outerlying shanty town.in contrast to MEDC cities whose suburban fringe is very often a place of high quality housing.often the oldest part of the city. The areas of poor quality housing found on the edge of cities in LEDCs are calledsquatter settlements or shanty towns.shanty town The CBD and high-class sector . Land use in Sao Paulo.Model of LEDC city Both MEDC and LEDC cities have a CBD .

public transport is limited and connections to the electricity supply can be limited and sometimes dangerous.fires can spread quickly. hotels. theatres and cinemas. Lack of space .8 million people and is one of the largest townships in South Africa. possibly a former colonial area. near the CBD or along main transport routes. offices. People living here will need easy access to the CBD.the newest and poorest arrivals may be forced to live on the worst quality land. Competition for jobs .the settlement has a high population density. High-class housing can be found around the edge of the CBD and in a spine radiating out towards the edge of the urban area. They tend to be unplanned and are often illegal. there is likely to be a more dramatic difference between the height of the buildings in the CBD and the height of the buildings in other zones. Shanty towns The fact that cities in LEDCs are growing rapidly means that conditions can be poor.the area does not have enough resources to support the growing population. Houses are self-built using basic materials and shanty towns have few services. Shanty towns are also known as townships in South Africa.services are poor. Disease . South Africa Problems:        Overcrowding . Khyalitsha in South Africa is a shanty town located near the city of Cape Town.poor sanitation and limited health care can lead to the spread of disease. Transport networks in LEDCs are not as well developed as MEDCs so the journey to work is a major consideration when deciding where to live. However. .The CBD in an LEDC looks very similar to a CBD in an MEDC. Shanty town residents face many problems on a daily basis. Overpopulation . The CBD contains facilities such as department stores. The Alexandra township in Johannesburg. The high class housing will be a mixture of old colonial houses and large apartments. There are often great inequalities within LEDC urban areas and they are even more pronounced in LEDCs. schools. Khyalitsha has a population of over 1.jobs are in short supply. Some of the worst conditions are found in the shanty towns on the edge of the city. Fires . both of which will have space for servants. This is likely to be a main transport route and a desirable street. Infrastructure .

a process called counter-urbanisation. Improving conditions in a squatter settlements can lead to improvements in the residents' quality of life. local communities. South Africa Over time the conditions in shanty towns may improve. The land is connected to the city by transport links and has access to essential services (eg water). Investment in rural areas may therefore help to improve conditions in the city as well. Improving the quality of life and creating greater opportunities in rural areas may prevent people from migrating to urban areas. over-rapid growth and environmental degradation.Improving shanty towns Soweto township in Johannesburg. Causes of urbanisation . health and employment. lack of sufficient housing. People build their own homes using money from a low-interest loan. Self-help schemes Rural investment Urbanisation in MEDCs Urbanisation can cause problems such as transport congestion. Long term. the solution must be to make cities more sustainable. In many LEDCs. These give people the tools and training to improve their homes. Many cities display particularly sharp inequalities in housing provision. People may be given legal ownership of the land. Approaches to improvement Site and service schemes These give people the chance to rent or buy a piece of land. charities and government departments are working together to improve conditions in squatter settlements. however. Lowinterest loans may be used to help people fund these changes. Some people try to escape these problems by moving away from the city .

These roads then link up with smaller. to encourage people to share cars. On a global scale. This causes a bottleneck and congestion. A rural area is an area of countryside.with many relocating to the countryside. the number of people living in urban areas tends to increase. Some cities have tried to manage this problem by introducing traffic management schemes. Problems of urbanisation in the CBD – traffic congestion Traffic jam on the M6 motorway As more people move to the edge of towns and cities. as used in the USA. As a country industrialises. Congestion charging schemes. It is compounded by people being brought into city on large roads or motorways. narrower roads in the city centre. more and more people are choosing to live on the edge of urban areas . particularly in LEDCs Although the UK is an urban society. The area of cities known as the inner city developed during this time as rows of terraced housing were built for workers. with 90% of the population living in towns or cities. older. Cycle lanes. Santiago. This is called counterurbanisation. . Car-pooling. These schemes may include:     Park and ride schemes. Many people will drive their cars into the city centre to get to work. such as those in Durham and London. An urban area is a built-up area such as a town or city. Chile Today the UK is a mostly urban society. urbanisation is taking place rapidly.Urbanisation means an increase in the proportion of people living in urban areas compared to rural areas. The UK and many other MEDCs urbanised during the 18th and 19th centuries. traffic congestion may get worse. People migrated from rural areas (due to the mechanisation in farming) to urban areas where there was employment in the new factories.

Permit holder parking in Westminster . Park and Ride scheme operating in Plymouth Pedestrianised areas are designated as pedestrian only zones. This reduces the number of people driving into towns and cities as parking opportunities are restricted. particularly near the centre. Local councils have also tried to make the roads in urban areas safer by introducing traffic calming.certain parts of the city. pedestrian zones. This means that people must have a permit to park in that area. People park in car parks on the edge of a settlement and catch regular buses into the centre. Liverpool Permit holder parking . Reducing congestion in cities The introduction of Park and Ride schemes. Pedestrian shopping streets. are designated as permit parking only. Low Emission Zones. as in London. vehicle-exclusion zones and permit-only parking schemes.

Inequality means extreme differences between poverty and wealth. as well as in people's well-being and access to things like jobs. This is because the inner-city is typically a zone with older housing and declining industry. eg large vehicles may not be allowed to enter narrow roads or residential areas. Vehicle exclusion sign Car pooling . . and education. Taxi cabs on a New York street Traffic calming . The diagram below compares the quality of life for someone living in an outer London borough with that of someone who lives in an inner London borough. Narrow roads may restrict the type of vehicle that can enter certain parts of the city.certain types of vehicles are excluded from certain parts of a city.Vehicle exclusion zones .roads narrowing and speed bumps make traffic move slower around narrower streets. Speed bump in a residential area in London Problems of urbanisation in the inner city – inequalities Inequalities exist in all urban areas. This has been used in a lot in the USA. housing. Inequalities may occur in:     Housing provision Access to services Access to open land Safety and security Often people who live in inner-city areas experience a poor quality of life.people are encouraged to share cars.

while households are more likely to have central heating and multiple cars in the outercity borough. Governments and planners often step in to help redevelop run-down inner-city areas. it can also create even greater inequalities because the local residents may not be able to afford to live there anymore. Often the old industrial jobs are replaced by skilled jobs and new people move to the area.Graph showing quality of life in Outer London Graph showing quality of life in Inner London Unemployment and incidents of long-term illness are higher in the inner-city boroughs. may improve the physical environment of the area and improve the quality of housing. Problems of urbanisation in the urban rural fringe – housing demand . such as those in London's Docklands or Manchester's Salford Quays. Inner-city redevelopments. However.

Land here is cheaper but greenfield development can cause conflict with local people and create environmental problems. A sustainable city will grow at a sustainable rate and use resources in a sustainable way. cycle or use public transport rather than cars? .'For Sale' signs outside a house Social and demographic changes are leading to a greater demand for housing. Added to this. or nearby. Cultural and social amenities are accessible to all. Walking and cycling is safe. There is access to affordable housing. Think of the town or city you live in. People are living longer. the UK is experiencing immigration from other countries. New homes are energy efficient. accessible and enjoyable. Areas of open space are safe. The result is an ever-larger number of smaller households. Other developers are building homes on the edge of the city on greenfield sites in the urban rural fringe. Community links are strong and communities work together to deal with issues such as crime and security. affordable homes in urban areas is difficult. Land values are very high and land is in short supply:  Some developers are building on sites that have been built on before in the UK's inner cities. building new. Public transport is safe and reliable.  Sustainable cities Many people are working towards trying to make cities more sustainable. A sustainable city offers a good quality of life to current residents but doesn't reduce the opportunities for future residents to enjoy. and in recent years there has been a rise in the number of single-parent families. This has happened in many of the UK’s inner cities. However. Inward investment is made to the CBD. Waste is seen as a resource and is recycled wherever possible. eg from Poland which has recently joined the EU. Public transport is seen as a viable alternative to cars. These are called brownfield sites. Wherever possible. all requiring accommodation. renewable resources are used instead of non-renewableresources. Key features of a sustainable city             Resources and services in the city are accessible to all.   Could it be more sustainable? Do people walk. and choosing to marry later.

       Are there enough safe open spaces. services and cultural amenities for everyone? Is there enough investment in the city centre? Is there a strong sense of community? Is waste recycled? Is there affordable housing for everyone? Are homes energy-efficient? Do they use renewable energy? .

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