City morphology and effective control mechanisms: towards land use optimization and sustainable development: a case study of Lagos mega city.
Agamah, Franca Unekwu.
MetadataShow full item record
Rapid urban growth and resultant modifications to the environment have significantly changed urban morphologies. Given the rapid growth of metropolitan Lagos and its constrained access to land, spontaneous, muddled patterns of development have resulted in unsustainable development with varying consequences for the environment and its inhabitants. These have implications for carrying capacity, aesthetics, resources and urban liveability and call for policy formulation and measures to plan and control development patterns. The hypothesis of the study was underpinned on the argument that land utilization and control of urban spatial growth are functions of adequate planning and effective frameworks in achieving sustainable development. The study provides a framework for assessing urban structure and morphology with a rationale for planning sustainable cities. It reviews the dynamics of urban growth and its complexities alongside planning and design methods and approaches. The study notes that different elements of cities respond to various stimuli that should be taken into account in seeking to achieve sustainable development. Lagos mega city’s policies and spatial development strategies have, unfortunately, not done so. Guided by critical and pragmatic theory, the study employed triangulated mixed methods to assess the morphology and temporal growth of Lagos mega city and the factors that influence it; it examined urban planning frameworks, policies and control mechanisms; implementation, enforcement and compliance. Three study areas (Lagos Island, Apapa and Victoria Island) were purposively selected as case studies and data were collected through onsite surveys and observation; interviews with planners and the administration of questionnaires to property owners. The findings show that the metropolis is characterized by poor land utilization and ineffective control of urban development which is constrained due to surrounding water bodies and burdened by rapid population growth. The hypotheses tested using the T-Test statistic indicate that while poor land utilization and uncontrolled urban spatial growth are not exclusively a function of poor planning and ineffective frameworks, changing city functions and urban growth have implications for land use that require forward planning. The study therefore developed the Land Use Optimization and Effective Control Model that encapsulates approaches, process and factors towards compact, mixed-use development for a sustainable urban form. The model will guide planning agencies and development plans to align with the objectives of sustainability.