Using Examples, Explain the Challenges of Rapid Megacity Growth.

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A megacity is an urban area with a population of over 8 million; examples include Sao Paulo, Mumbai, Los Angeles and Beijing. However these megacities face problems, for example Mumbai is a megacity which is facing problems as a consequence of rapid growth. Within Mumbai there is a slum area, Dharavi which houses 600,000 people in only one square mile land. This has come as a consequence of rural to urban migration; the rural people are attracted to the city by the “bright light syndrome” and the prospect of jobs and a better standard of living. Often TNCs invest in megacities within developing cities due to the cheap labour, but there are simply not enough jobs for all the people that rapidly move into the city. The rapid growth of the city has lead to illegally constructed, bad quality buildings and houses on government land in Mumbai with poor sanitation and standard of living. Taps run dry most of the time in Dharavi and tankers have to come and bring water to the slum every fortnight at government expense. Government and services face the challenge of battling diseases which arise from overcrowded conditions which lead to poor hygiene, sanitation and unclean water supply. In Mumbai’s Dharavi open drains run thick with untreated human and industrial waste- cholera, typhoid and malaria are common. Government along with charity and aid workers face the challenge of policing these areas and giving the dwellers a chance at earning money so they can move to legal housing. There is also an issue of crime. Crime is very high in Dharavi and there are no police patrols in the slums. Barely 10% of the commercial activity in the slum is legal but the average household wage in Dharavi is well above that in rural areas of India. Some parts of Dharavi have bars, beauty parlours, clothes boutiques and even cash machines. If the prospects of the dwellers and the future generations of the slums are to escape poverty, a challenge the government faces is education, the slums...
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