In-City Resettlement Across Twenty Years
The pace of urbanization has increased steadily, and for the past half century it has increased exponentially. Urbanization represents real progress in human welfare and productivity, but it also produces a wealth of social problems. One of the most widespread and serious of these is homelessness and what is usually called “Squatting” or “Squatters.” Cities attract people from the rural areas, hoping to increase their well-being with the greater opportunities and excitement the city provides. Too often however the speed and magnitude of migration and the poverty of so many migrants can swamp whatever capacity a city has for building the needed homes. The result is squatter or slum developments. Many governments strive to bring some order to this dynamic, sometimes with repressive relocation schemes that are designed only to get rid of an eyesore. More enlightened programs try to provide the credit and land needed for truly adequate housing. This case study speaks to this broader problem, and provides an example of the more enlightened approach.
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