Monday, 14 June 2010

Urban Growth, 1800 - 2030

Throughout history, most human beings have lived in rural areas. But urbanization was rapid throughout the 20th Century.

This article is part of the Inspiring Cities open source campaign Help Us Write the 2008 UNFPA Culture Paragraph.


By 2007, city dwellers will outnumber those in rural areas for the first time in history.In 1800, only 3 per cent of people lived in cities. London, with about a million habitants, was the largest city in the world.

By 1950, the world was urbanizing rapidly, 8 cities had populations of 5 million or more. Two were in the developing world.

By 2000, 30 more cities had 5 million people or more. Most were in the developing world. 47 per cent of the world’s people lived in urban areas.
By 2015, another 17 cities will have grown to 5 million or more. 23 will be “mega-cities” with 10 million people or more. Most will be in the developing world.

By 2030, 20 cities are projected to have 20 million people or more. Based on current trends, 1.5 billion people will live in slums.

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