THe Blog

June 10, 2016

The New Urban Agenda must Recognize the Importance of Intermediary Cities

This Cityscope blogpost discusses the story of the coming urban explosion which is about the rise of medium-sized cities. 


"...The past decade has seen the number of Asian intermediary cities explode from 342 to 629 — a far faster rate of expansion than seen for the region’s larger cities, which grew from 137 to 267 during the same period. The numbers for the rest of Asia’s intermediary cities, those with population between 50,000 and 300,000, appear to be even more spectacular, according to new research.


To a great extent, then, the story of the coming urban explosion is one of the rise of the intermediary city. But the world’s planners and authorities have yet to accept this fact...


Beyond their fast-rising populations, intermediary cities are particularly important on the global level for their positioning between urban and rural economies. The intermediary city strengthens connections between citizens and local governments as well as connectivity between vast rural areas...


Yet intermediary cities are globally important not just due to concerns around migration. These are also areas of significant potential innovation in local economic development...This can be greatly facilitated by allowing territorial and urban planning to become a central tool for collaborative management among government and citizens...


In this, all sides will need to discover the potential of intermediary cities as agents of achieving territorial balance. Intermediary cities are inherent to ensuring better economic, social and environmental integration between rural environments that are currently being abandoned and large urban agglomerations that will likely be unable to provide decent work for a significant part of the coming generations."


Read the full post here.

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