n Journal of Emerging Trends in Engineering and Applied Sciences - A study on the effectiveness of urban development control instruments and practices in Eldoret Municipality, Kenya

Volume 5, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 2141-7016
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The challenge facing the world today is how to create sustainable cities. The number of people living in urban centres continues to grow at approximately twice the rate of that in the rural areas. It is expected that the global city population increased to 2.76 billion in 1995 and projected to be 5.34 billion in the year 2025, thus exerting greater pressure on the natural environment than ever before. Kenya is rapidly urbanizing with 20.4% of her population residing in urban areas in 2005, and by 2030 the proportion of Kenyan population living in urban areas is estimated to reach 60% or 38.2 million people (Kenya, 2007). It is projected that Eldoret town will be home to 584,782 people in 2030. This rapid urbanization will therefore need to be guided by effective urban development control instruments and practices. The broad objective of the study was to identify and document urban development control instruments, determine their efficacy and the implications on the urban environment. A total of 188 respondents were randomly selected for interview, from a list of applicants who submitted their building plans for development permission from 2005 to 2010 in Eldoret Municipal Council (EMC). It emerged that both statutory and non-statutory instruments including spatial plans inform urban development control system in EMC. The predicted urban development trends revealed that between 2005 to 2010, 4941 buildings had covered an urban space of 98.8 hectares, and by 2030, 400 hectares of natural environment will be built up in EMC area, resulting in deleterious environmental impacts and hence the need for sound urban development control interventions. The analysis revealed that 38% of the applicants who were granted development permission for building plans from 2005 to 2010 had failed to comply with building regulations. Urban development control related environmental problems of increase surface runoff, and/or flooding, garbage disposal and pollution were found to be the most critical in various urban neighbourhood zones in EMC. The study aims at making policy recommendations for better planning and development control of urban areas and Cities.

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