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Analyzing the Distribution Pattern of Underserved Settlements with Focusing the Relative Influence from the Key Factors

Related to Urban Land Use Decisions, in the case of Colombo, Sri Lanka Aruna Bandara Wickramasinghe1 and Tetsuo Kidokoro2
1. Graduate Student, Department of Urban Engineering, University of Tokyo 2. Associate Professor, Department of Urban Engineering, University of Tokyo

Housing is a common urban issue for most of the countries in the world and it is critical in developing countries. According to the United Nations, nearly 32 percent of world urban population, that is one billion people live in urban slums and it is rapidly increasing, specially in the cities in developing world. Housing issue is not only a concern of shelter, but also related to many other socio-economic issues as well. Many countries try to address this problem in various ways. Many theories try to explain the root of the problem in different perspectives. But yet, none of them are universally applicable due to the socio-cultural uniqueness of different regions in the world. The housing problem in the economic capital of Sri Lanka, the city of Colombo is still looking for a solution. By year 2001, there were more than 1,600 underserved settlements and more than 77,600 families were living in them. As the city grows the underserved settlements become not only a sanitary related issue, but also an economic issue since the lands they are located are becoming prime lands. In this background, relocating the people live in underserved settlement has become the prime strategy in addressing this issue, which leads to many other social issues. In this context, this research attempts to find the relative applicability of land use related theories in addressing this issue in local urban context. The factors, which could influence in location decision of underserved settlements (in general, urban land use) are selected from leading well known theories related to urban land use. The influences of those factors in establishing underserved settlements are measured as relative values, which is based on the level of compatibility between the situation described by the theory and the current underserved settlements distribution pattern of the city. By revealing the relative level of influence by key factors, the planner can apply more effective strategies by controlling those factors. Most importantly, these findings can lead to a localized model for identify possible locations those will attract underserved settlements in future, which will allow planners to avoid such issues and achieve better planning outcome. Keywords: Underserved Settlements, Urban Land Use, Strategic Intervention, Urban

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