By Carey L. Biron
Washington — Urban areas are expected to grow by 80 percent by the end of the next decade, and unless they grow up rather than out, they could be in trouble, according to a new report from the World Resources Institute and Yale University.
But poor land records, rampant speculation and weak or corrupt implementation of regulations means that cities are using land inefficiently, increasing inequity and environmental risk as new residents take matters into their own hands, co-author Anjali Mahendra told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
"We talk about flooding in Jakarta and Indian cities, but people don't tie any of this back to land use. But now there's enough evidence that all of this is occurring because of overdevelopment where services aren't available," said Mahendra, director of research at the institute's Ross Center for Sustainable Cities.