Advertisement

Urban Forum

, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 415–432 | Cite as

Urbanisation of Hope or Despair? Urban Planning Dilemma in Ghana

  • Patrick Brandful CobbinahEmail author
  • Michael Poku-Boansi
  • Raymond Asomani-Boateng
Article

Abstract

Our reflections on recent treatment of African urbanisation begins with the assertion that implicit recognition and acceptance of “rapid urbanisation” as a legitimate and primary cause of urban management challenges—e.g. poverty, slum development, haphazard development, etc.—has impoverished the appreciation of other fundamental causes of poor urban functionality in Ghanaian cities. This article argues that urban planning practice in Ghana has contributed to the many urbanisation challenges in Ghanaian cities, yet remains critical if rapid urbanisation is to be effectively managed. The article provides some useful policy directions to managing rapid urbanisation in Ghana.

Keywords

Africa Ghana Urbanisation Urban planning Urban management 

References

  1. Abubakar, I. R. (2014). Abuja City profile. Cities, 41, 81–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Accra Planning & Development Programme, (1985). Strategic plan for the greater Accra metropolitan area (Volume 1). Prepared by Accra Planning & Development Programme in association with the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat). Retrieved 21/03/2016 from: http://mci.ei.columbia.edu/files/2013/03/AMA-Strategic-Plan-vol-1.pdf (Retrieved 16/06/2016).
  3. Accra Planning & Development Programme, (1991). Strategic plan for the greater Accra metropolitan area (Volume 2). Prepared by Accra Planning & Development Programme in association with the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat). Retrieved 21/03/2016 from: http://mci.ei.columbia.edu/files/2013/03/AMA-Strategic-Plan-vol-2.pdf (Retrieved 16/06/2016).
  4. Accra Planning & Development Programme, (1992). Strategic plan for the greater Accra metropolitan area (Volume 3). Prepared by Accra Planning & Development Programme in association with the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat). Retrieved 21/03/2016 from: http://mci.ei.columbia.edu/files/2013/03/AMA-strategic-plan-vol-3.pdf (Retrieved 16/06/2016).
  5. Adarkwa, K. K. (2012). The changing face of Ghanaian towns. African Review of Economics and Finance, 4(1), 1–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Amoako, C., & Cobbinah, P. B. (2011). Slum improvement in the Kumasi metropolis: review of results and approaches. Journal of Sustainable Development in Africa, 13(8), 150–170.Google Scholar
  7. Amoateng, P., Cobbinah, P. B., & Owusu-Adade, K. (2013). Managing physical development in peri-urban areas of Kumasi, Ghana: a case of Abuakwa. Journal of Urban and Environmental Engineering, 7(1), 96–109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Amoateng, P., Cobbinah, P.B. & Ofori-Kumah, K. (2014). Towards creation of sustainable enclaves for small and medium-size enterprises in Kumasi, Ghana. International Journal of Social, Human Science and Engineering, 8(1), 333–341.Google Scholar
  9. Awumbila, M., Owusu, G. & Teye, J.K. (2014). Can rural-urban migration into slums reduce poverty? Evidence from Ghana. Migrating Out of Poverty Working Paper 13, University of Sussex. Retrieved 12/03/2016 from: http://migratingoutofpoverty.dfid.gov.uk/files/file.php?name=wp-13---awumbila-owusu-teye-2014-can-rural-urban-migration-into-slums-reduce-poverty-final.pdf&site=354
  10. Bloom, D. E., & Khanna, T. (2007). The urban revolution: rapid urbanisation may prove a blessing provided the world takes notice and plans accordingly. Finance and Development, 44(3), 9–14.Google Scholar
  11. Bloom, D. E., Canning, D., & Fink, G. (2008). Urbanisation and the wealth of nations. Science, 319(5864), 772–775.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Boadi, K., Kuitunen, M., Raheem, K., & Hanninen, K. (2005). Urbanisation without development: environmental and health implications in African cities. Environment, Development and Sustainability, 7, 465–500.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Brockerhoff, M., & Brennan, E. (1998). The poverty of cities in developing regions. Population and Development Review, 24(1), 75–114.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Cobbinah, P. B. (2015). Local attitudes towards natural resources management in rural Ghana. Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, 26(3), 423–436. doi: 10.1108/MEQ-04-2014-0061.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cobbinah, P. B., & Amoako, C. (2012). Urban sprawl and the loss of peri-urban land in Kumasi, Ghana. International Journal of Social and Human Sciences, 6, 388–397.Google Scholar
  16. Cobbinah, P. B., & Darkwah, R. M. (2016a). African urbanism: the geography of urban greenery. Urban Forum, 27(2), 149–165. doi: 10.1007/s12132-016-9274-z.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Cobbinah, P. B. & Darkwah, R. M. (2016b). Toward a more desirable form of sustainable urban development in Africa. African Geographical Review, 1-24, doi:  10.1080/19376812.2016.1208770
  18. Cobbinah, P. B., & Erdiaw-Kwasie, M. O. (2016). Urbanisation in Ghana: insights and implications for urban governance. In U. G. Benna & S. B. Garba (Eds.), Population growth and rapid urbanisation in the developing world (pp. 82–104). United States of America: IGI Global.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Cobbinah, P. B., & Korah, P. I. (2015). Religion gnaws urban planning: the geography of places of worship in Kumasi, Ghana. International Journal of Urban Sustainable Development, 1-17. doi:  10.1080/19463138.2015.1074581
  20. Cobbinah, P. B., Erdiaw-Kwasie, M. O., & Amoateng, P. (2015a). Rethinking sustainable development within the framework of poverty and urbanisation in developing countries. Environmental Development, 13, 18–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Cobbinah, P. B., Erdiaw-Kwasie, M. O., & Amoateng, P. (2015b). Africa’s urbanisation: implications for sustainable development. Cities, 47(0), 62-72. doi: 10.1016/j.cities.2015.03.013
  22. Cobbinah, P. B., Gaisie, E., & Owusu-Amponsah, L. (2015c). Peri-urban morphology and indigenous livelihoods in Ghana. Habitat International, 50, 120-129. doi: 10.1016/j.habitatint.2015.08.002
  23. Cohen, B. (2006). Urbanisation in developing countries: current trends, future projections, and key challenges for sustainability. Technology in Society, 28, 63–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Diaw, K., Nnkya, T., & Watson, V. (2002). Planning education in Sub-Saharan Africa: responding to the demands of a changing context. Planning Practice and Research, 17, 337–348.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Fuseini, I., & Kemp, J. (2015). A review of spatial planning in Ghana’s socio-economic development trajectory: a sustainable development perspective. Land Use Policy., 47, 309–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Grant, R. (2009). Globalising city: the urban and economic transformation of Accra, Ghana. New York, NY: Syracuse University Press.Google Scholar
  27. GSS. (2005). Policy implications of population trends data. Population Data Analysis Reports Volume 2. Accra, Ghana: GSSGoogle Scholar
  28. GSS. (2012). 2010 population and housing census. Summary report of final results. GSS, Sakoa Press Limited, Accra, GhanaGoogle Scholar
  29. GSS. (2013). 2010 population and housing census: national analytical report. Accra: GSS.Google Scholar
  30. Hamza, M., & Zetter, R. (2000). Reconceiving the knowledge-base of planning education in the developing world. Third World Planning Review, 22, 433–455. doi: 10.3828/twpr.22.4.l1672m715555p343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kaplan, R. D. (1996). Cities of despair. New York Times (7 June), New York, USA.Google Scholar
  32. Kennedy, P. (1993). Preparing for the twenty-first century. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
  33. Laryea-Adjei, G. (2000). Building capacity for urban management in Ghana: some critical considerations. Habitat International, 24(4), 391–401. doi: 10.1016/S0197-3975(00)00005-9.
  34. Leith, J. C. (1974). Growth factors. In J. C. Leith (Ed.), Foreign trade regimes and economic development: Ghana (Vol. 2, pp. 81–108). New York: UMI. Retrieved from http://www.nber.org/chapters/c4121.Google Scholar
  35. Mabogunje Akin, L. (2005). Global urban poverty research agenda: the African case. Paper presented at a seminar on “Global Urban Poverty: Setting the Research Agenda” organised by the Comparative Urban Studies Project of Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and held in Washington DC on December 15, 2005. https://www.citiesalliance.org/sites/citiesalliance.org/files/mabogunjepaper%5B1%5D.pdf (Retrieved 23/09/2015).
  36. Misilu, M. N. E., Shouyu, C., & Li Qin, Z. (2010). Sustainable urbanisation’s challenge in Democratic Republic of Congo. Journal of Sustainable Development, 3(2), 242–254.Google Scholar
  37. Muluka, B. (2002). Abuja sets best example of city planning—start afresh. Sunday Standard Newspaper, Nairobi Kenya, May, 2002, 7.Google Scholar
  38. Obeng-Odoom, F. (2010). ‘Abnormal’ urbanisation in Africa: a dissenting view. African Geographical Review, 29(2), 13–40.Google Scholar
  39. Obeng-Odoom, F., & Amedzro, L. (2011). Inadequate housing in Ghana. Urbani Izziv, 22(1), 127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Oberai, A. S. (1993). Population growth, employment and poverty in third-world mega-cities. New York: St. Martin’s Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Okpala, D. (2009). Regional overview of the status of urban planning and planning practice in Anglophone (Sub-Saharan) African countries. Regional study prepared for ‘Revisiting Urban Planning: Global Report on Human Settlements. http://unhabitat.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/GRHS.2009.Regional.Anglophone.Africa.pdf (Retrieved 22/ 05/2015).
  42. Owusu, G. (2015). Decentralised development planning and fragmentation of metropolitan regions: the case of the greater Accra Metropolitan Area, Ghana. Ghana Journal of Geography, 7(1), 1–24.Google Scholar
  43. Owusu, G., & Oteng-Ababio, M. (2015). Moving unruly contemporary urbanism. Toward sustainable urban development in Ghana by 2030. American Behavioral Scientist, 59(3), 311–327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Potts, D. (2009). The slowing of sub-Saharan Africa’s urbanisation: evidence and implications for urban livelihoods. Environment and Urbanisation, 21, 253–259.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Potts, D. (2012). Whatever happened to Africa’s rapid urbanisation? (Counterpoint Series). London, England: Africa Research Institute. Retrieved from http://africaresearchinstitute.org/newsite/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Whatever-happened-to-Africas-rapidurbanisation.pdf.Google Scholar
  46. Quarcoopome, S. S. (1993). A history of the urban development of Accra: 1877-1957. Research Review, 9(1-2), 20–32.Google Scholar
  47. Ravallion, M., Chen, S., & Sangraula, P. (2007). The urbanisation of global poverty. Background paper to the World Development Report 2008, World Bank, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  48. Songsore, J. (2009). The urban transition in Ghana: urbanisation, national development and poverty reduction. A study prepared for the IIED as part of its eight country case studies on urbanization: University of Ghana, Accra.Google Scholar
  49. UNDESA/PD. (2012). World urbanisation prospects: the 2011 revision. New York: United Nations.Google Scholar
  50. Watson, V. (2009). Seeing from the South: refocusing urban planning on the globe’s central urban issues. Urban Studies, 46(11), 2259–2275.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Wood, S. (1970). Some problems of town and country planning in Africa. J. Legal Plur. Unoff. Law, 2(3), 77–95. doi: 10.1080/07329113.1970.10756156.
  52. World Bank. (2015). Ghana Urbanisation Review Overview Report, April 2015. Washington: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank. Rising through cities in Ghana.Google Scholar
  53. Yankson, P. W. K., Kofie, R. Y., & Lasse, M. (2004). Monitoring urban growth: urbanisation of the fringe areas of Accra. Working Paper.Google Scholar
  54. Yeboah, E. & Obeng-Odoom, F. (2010). “We are not the only ones to blame”: District Assemblies’ perspectives on the state of planning in Ghana. Commonwealth Journal of Local Governance, (7). November, 78–98.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Brandful Cobbinah
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Michael Poku-Boansi
    • 3
  • Raymond Asomani-Boateng
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Management, Faculty of Environment Society and DesignLincoln UniversityLincoln 7647New Zealand
  2. 2.Institute for Land Water and SocietyCharles Sturt UniversityAlburyAustralia
  3. 3.Department of Planning, Faculty of Built EnvironmentKwame Nkrumah University of Science and TechnologyKumasiGhana
  4. 4.Urban and Regional Studies Institute, Minnesota State University MankatoMankatoUSA

Personalised recommendations