Exploration and Analysis of the Drivers of Urban Sprawl in Pakistan: A Case Study of Lahore

Theme/Relevant Ministry:

M/o Commerce and Textile Industry; City/ District Administration

Project Brief:

Pakistan has experienced massive growth in urbanisation since its inception in 1947. Urbanisation in Pakistan is quite different from the one that occurred in the developed world as an outcome of industrialization, thus, making supplying side of housing very much dependent on demand side. Conversely, urbanisation in Pakistan surpassed industrialization. For instance, Lahore alone has witnessed 10 times increase in population from 1.12 million in 1951 to 11.12 million in 2017. This uncontrolled and unsustainable growth in citizens’ size, referred to as urban sprawl here, puts unprecedented economic and psychological strain on urban communities, policy-makers, and street level administrator alike. Whereas a number of studies examine the dynamics and the drivers and the effects of urban sprawl, only a handful of researchers have examined the role of regulations and unfair market practices in urban sprawl. Given this background, the current study seeks to ask: how have regulations and unfair market practices supported by bureaucracy been causing urban sprawl in Lahore, Pakistan? This inquiry departs from the extent literature by offering an in-depth qualitative account of drivers of urban sprawls, which would be of interest to urban policy makers and social scientists alike.

Public Policy Relevance:

This research aims at drawing the attention of administrators, policymakers, and legislators towards the role of regulations and unfair market practices supported by bureaucracy in urban sprawl—where it is hypothesised that regulations and unfair market practices supported by bureaucracy trigger urban sprawl. Thus, the findings of this research study could influence and marshal them to review and amend the regulations and zoning codes and restructure the regulating agencies and governing bodies to cope with this menace and ensure sustainable urban growth.

Mazhar Abbas
Assistant Professor, Government College University, Faisalabad (PI)
06 months
Rs. 2,500,000/-
Imran Wakil