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Urban Renewal and Associated Problems in Lagos, 1924 – 1990
Lagos, Nigeria’s economic capital has undergone exponential growth over the past few decades. Its population has more than quintupled in fifty years. The population growth has had a dramatic impact on not just the Lagos environment but also on urban/municipal infrastructure bringing about a huge increase in unregulated development, traffic congestion, increase in traffic noise, air pollution, flooding, and decadent infrastructure among others. Urban/municipal infrastructure which involves specifying, designing, constructing, and maintaining several services has never had it so good in Lagos. The coordination of these infrastructure networks and services, since they are supposed to be provided simultaneously and managed by the same municipal authority, is key to municipal engineering. However, the coordination and management of same have been difficult to achieve by the various governments of Lagos in the period under study up till the present. The paper argues that in order to arrest the disruption of the past brought about by the un-coordinated policies of Lagos governments in the period under study, twenty-first century governments of Lagos must embark on the environmental and social renewal of Lagos. The Lagos government should adopt an urban renewal strategy that is people first, district based, and public participatory. The government has to balance the interests and needs of all sectors of the communities without sacrificing the lawful rights of any particular group.