Thursday, June 12, 2008

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Burkina Faso
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Urban population in Burkina Faso grew 200 per cent between 1975 and 2000 and is projected to continue expanding at a similar pace over the next quarter century. The capital, Ouagadougou, is home to approximately 40 per cent of Burkina Faso's rapidly growing urban population, with 1.2 million residents in 2003. In the 1980s, much of Ouagadougou's growth was the result of rural to urban migration of young people; however, by the mid-1990s natural growth had become the main factor.

In spite of government attempts to manage it, much of the residential growth in Ouagadougou has occurred in unplanned settlements at the periphery of the city. Because of the sprawling nature of these settlements, the city occupied 14 times more area in 1993 than it had only 33 years earlier. By the early 1980s, 60 per cent of the urban area was occupied by unplanned settlement. Much of this growth was concentrated in the south to southwest perimeter, a trend already apparent in the 1986 image (yellow arrows). The 2004 image shows more recent growth has been concentrated in the south and east (yellow arrows).

Unplanned settlements limit future possibilities for planned development and further complicate delivery of basic services. The problem of an insufficient water supply is already being heavily felt. In addition, space used for these settlements is lost to other uses, including agriculture and wildlife habitat.
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