The Large City pp 246-265 | Cite as

Steps to Urban Improvement

  • Ursula K. Hicks


In this last chapter an attempt is made to sketch out the most pressing steps that need to be taken towards turning a large city in an L.D.C. into a ‘good city’ as defined in Chapter 8. The difficulties are very great. They differ from country to country not only because of the relative availability of finance and management, but also according to the degree to which institutions are flexible, for instance in respect of the speed with which new technical methods can be introduced or new legislation passed. The task of urban improvement in L.D.C.s starts with two handicaps: first, that in every aspect it tends to get treated with indifference by the local elite, politicians, planners, councillors and also by most foreign advisers. Potential leaders are primarily interested in growth and hence in projects that promise to raise the G.D.P. Urban improvement seems to have no direct relevance to this. Concentration on growth implies that it is more difficult to get funds for urban improvement than for enterprises. Yet it is not really true that better urban conditions will not contribute to growth; they do so by improving the quality of the labour force, providing better living conditions, family planning and a reduction of health hazards, creating a better educated and more alert population.


Large City Housing Programme Metro Area Good Living Condition High Level Government 
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© Ursula K. Hicks 1974

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  • Ursula K. Hicks

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