PUF 2011 Lahore: Urban Governance System Stressed

LAHORE, March 2: There is a dire need to develop an urban governance system based on effective planning and management to address emerging urban issues.
“There have been urban-rural division but now in cities one can also witness urban-urban division, necessitating solution of the issues in a proper way,” said Planning and Development Department’s Urban Unit Project Director Dr Nasir Javed at the urban challenges session of the Pakistan Urban Forum 2011 at Alhamra on Wednesday.
“At present, the ratio of total urban population is about 35 per cent which would increase up to 40 per cent in 2013 and 60 per cent in 2020. Population of cities is increasing at the rate of one million annually, while 50 per cent of the urban population has been residing in big cities,” said Dr Javed.
An effective urban policy at national level was need of the hour in order to combat urbanization through integrated and coordinated efforts. “Cities should generate their own resources so that these could manage in better ways. There should be a separate system of governance in cities and urban challenge is a reality. Act now, it might be too late tomorrow,” he said.
During the other two sessions held at separate halls of Alhamra, foreign and local urban experts presented their papers and answered questions of the participants.
Three more sessions of the Forum 2011 would be held at Alhamra on the third day on Thursday.
The first session would be held at Alhamra Hall-II on Urban Challenges while a lecture on “Conservation and Preservation” would be delivered at Hall-I. Two technical sessions would be held at Hall-III – first on “Urban Management” and second on “Sustainable Urban Environment”.

(Daily DAWN Dated March 3, 2011)