(pp.319-329) R. Udika ‘The uphill climb for environment and development: the challenges of rapid urban development in Trinidad and Tobago’, World Sustainable Development Outlook, 2010
Rudo Udika, University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago
Abstract: Rapid urban development has become the major demographic trend complicating attempts towards sustainable development in Trinidad and Tobago. Historically, the nation demonstrates a skewed pattern of urban development focused along the southern foothills of the Northern Range. As urban development proceeds unchecked, there have been intolerable consequences for the environment and development. The degradation of terrestrial, marine and coastal resources has been heightened by an inability of the authorities to resolve the urban development challenges impacting the small islands. To date, urban sprawl continues to claim prime agricultural lands; fragment forest cover and pollute terrestrial, coastal and marine ecosystems. Physical planning seeks to prescribe spatial order to appropriate land uses and control the quantum of urban development that is allowed. Challenges towards the delivery of an integrated approach to land use planning have severe implications on the national attempt to move forward.
Keywords: urban sprawl; sustainable development; integrated land use planning.