Review of The Modern Global Issue of Urban Sprawl

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About this sample


Words: 1923 |

Pages: 4|

10 min read

Published: Dec 16, 2021

Words: 1923|Pages: 4|10 min read

Published: Dec 16, 2021

Strength comes with planning, precision, and continuous practice of past successes. Western cultures have proven this true in the last three centuries. Urban sprawl, another word used for urbanization. Urbanization mostly refers to the rapidly increasing population of urban areas. It can also be defined with the time and place that things grow, but many seem to use the title as something more demographic. It was originally coined in 1937 by city planners in the Southeastern part of the United States at the end of World War I because much of the growth across the country was making it very difficult to have farmland. Each person across the country made their own space and purchased their land. With urban sprawl, community life was destroyed and access to the countryside was limited so many businesses and communities decided to migrate outward. This spread made it more difficult for any residents that are still left in the rural areas because many now are surrounded by factories, plants, and weakly planned business parks. Urban Sprawl has been a popular concern and has vastly grown from the early 1940s to today.

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This has lead to the weakening of building techniques, the suffering of the environment, and massive economic and environmental repercussions that play alongside. Many communities have started to finally understand that this is a very important topic and have started to take matters more seriously. Alternatively, modern cultures are flourishing and learning to become new once again. The fact of the matter is, cultures need room to expand and thrive. The solution is the idea that to successfully expand an economy, rural landscaping and rapid build times are the ideal way to continue advancements in human culture. However, high-density areas tend to lead to higher crime rates and more illnesses within urban areas. Thesis: While many members of society can see urban sprawl as a positive way to spread and grow as a community, it has created international issues and furthers the financial debt and unnecessary environmental issues within each living society.

Understanding what urbanization is the first step that needs to be taken to be able to focus on how to write an essay about urban sprawl. An article written by five separate authors, Deborah Balk, Stefan Leyk, Bryan Jones, Mark R. Montgomery, and Anastasia Clark, involves details that help and lead others to truly learn about how to understand the effects it has on the environment. The authors continue about how the five conducted surveys with communities all around the globe to help understand how to define and explain urbanization.

The authors involved in writing this article, examine the statistics of population science and how to evaluate that in an instance of urbanization. “This study presents a new spatial approach to derive consistent urban proxies for the US” (Balk, Leyk, Jones, Montgomery, & Clark 2018). Giving the ability to even learn how to understand the census meaning of the word urban. This may not have an environmentalist approach to it, but it surely can give a pathway to introduce the topic of urbanization alongside the topic of the negative effects that urban sprawl has on the environment and the people living within it.

With an environmental approach to the idea of urbanization from a negative standpoint, many observations have efficiently proven that every aspect of life is negatively affected, including the soil. An article was written by an author named Alex Richardson-Price about the Soil Depletion Crisis. The Soil Depletion Crisis, in summary, describes that in the last two centuries, lifestyles in urban and rural areas have seen many permanent changes to the global climate and the worry for a complete chill over the globe. In other words, the idea that climate change can be affected by changes in the soil. ‘In previous centuries the population was spread more or less evenly across the land, but a combination of land enclosure and rapid urbanisation meant that many people were now packed tightly into urban centres” (Richardson-Price 2016). It describes the areas of how the environment can be changed with the wild, unrestricted spread of communities for economic and political gain. Many sources glaze over the idea of climate change, but climate change makes a connection between the crisis of the safety of the planet and the dangers the people are making for the planet.

One of the biggest issues that culture can physically attest to is traffic control and the rapid newfound amount of daily traffic in the last decade. Urbanization is one of the major events of the contemporary world view to growing at an alarming rate. Today, it is estimated that there are at least 3 billion urban dwellers. By 2030, it could be three-quarters of the population. The accelerated urbanization causes an increased need for transport because of the inability to walk or take the bus to where someone needs to be. This contributes to the idea of environmental problems that arise with urban sprawl because the increase in traffic will lead to the overuse of cars and gasoline and burning CO2. An article called The Role of Urbanization in the Global Carbon Cycle attests to this stating that urbanization has created two new ways of carbon intake, from landfills and total vegetation that is in an area. Quoted in the text “The urban shares in the global carbon cycle are likely to increase in the future as the urban population is on the rise and projected to reach 75% of the world population by 2030′ (Churkina 2015). This can lead to many pollution issues and makes way for many instances for a global community to struggle.

Noise pollution can also disturb everything within each community. Airplanes, industrial trucks and semis take the role of main exportation devices, leads to the pollution of sound throughout all areas of a city. It can lead to many physical issues such as hypertension, high-stress levels, and hearing loss. An article titled Assessment of Noise Pollution Indices in the City of Kolhapur, India, the author talks about how the increase of noise pollution in India has rapidly increased over the last 50 years due to the spreading of homes and businesses into rural areas and that it has deeply affected the well-being of the culture as a whole.

Urban sprawl has also deeply affected the small animal population. An article by Rafał Łopucki explains how much of an impact communities have on the ground-dwelling animals in urban areas. The article states ‘A decline in species richness and diversity along an urbanization gradient and an increase in the abundance of species best adapted to the city environment (synurbic species) were observed” ( Łopucki 2013). In short, animals make up most of the environment around urban areas and the surrounding miles as well. Łopucki has a very detailed way of showing how urban sprawl has forced animals in urban areas where cities have unrestrictedly grown and spread to migrate to areas unknown to their species and ultimately die because the environment is not made for specific species. The environment has been extremely impacted, and with each stretch to more rural areas, it becomes more difficult for each species to survive.

Gentrification has a major role in what the negative effects of urbanization are. Gentrification is the process of changing the characteristics of a neighborhood through the influx of higher paid residents and wealthy businesses. Or in other terms, it is describing a new stage for a culture that includes an economic change in a historically unchanged neighborhood. By means of real estate, investments and higher-income residents moving in. As well as demographic change, not only in terms of a community’s income level but also in terms of changes in the education level or racial make-up, gender or sexual orientation of residents. Seeing this benefit to the social class with higher wages, it can be an issue when it comes to lower-income communities. An article written by the Berkeley University of California explains in detail “On the whole, we cannot ignore that the adverse impacts of gentrification, ranging from individual health effects to the suburbanization of poverty, are only the most recent wave in a pattern of urban restructuring that has been imposed upon and negatively affected low income and communities of color over generations” (Chappel & Zuk 2015). This quote gives more of an understanding of the definition of gentrification and how it relates to urbanization. Gentrification involves more of causal influence in the social media area and how the social composition has changed throughout the times that urban sprawl has started.

To look for the most involved with the negative effects of Urbanization, it is wise to turn to the farmers of the culture. Farmers have the biggest consequences with the changes in modern society when urban sprawl is involved. It seems to come clear or extremely relevant to farmers that urban sprawl is very difficult for their occupations at this time. An article titled What Will Farming Look Like in 2040? Describes a bit about the shift in priority that the people of an area give to farmers. In the article, there are many quotes from other articles explaining what the future holds for farmers and what will change with the change in the diets of future generations. “In particular, the report points to the rapidly growing population, water scarcity, climate change, urbanisation, technological advance and political tension, which will all have an impact”(Clarke 2019). With little to no leeway on what it seems to be impossible to be changed or renovated for farmers, it leads to questions asking about how each community will be able to work with environmental issues and spreading of cities and towns throughout all of the globe. Farming is one of the biggest parts of the environment and is the main food source for all species. So it is imaginable that it will be difficult for anyone in the farming career field to continue without difficulty.

One notable issue within urban sprawl stems from the idea of the education system. Urbanization has brought many people in cities and towns closer together which has led to a larger capacity in public and private K-12 school systems. An article written by Robert Havighurst about the school systems in rural areas, explains that ‘Rural schools have been consolidated into larger into larger schools, and the decline of the rural population has decreased the number of pupils attending small consolidated schools’ (Havighurst 1967). Havighurst explains that the necessity for small one-room schools has become obsolete and bigger and more capacitated schools. This can lead to the decline of one on one time from teacher to student. This can become prevalent in modern school systems and the decline of graduating students. The growth of humanity revolves around the expansion of knowledge in youth and the disadvantage of the bigger schools not being able to spend personal time with students will detriment their well-being.

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Whether there is knowledge of what urban sprawl is within any community, it is always wise to get invested in research that helps better the community. Urban sprawl has been quite a big issue in the previous decades making international cultures struggle economically. Not mentioning the wildlife of certain areas will soon deplete to extinction if there is not a sort of step to eliminating the idea of spreading outward. Urban sprawl has made extreme economic and environmental commotion within each society. The negative effects of urbanization will only continue unless members of society learn to research some of the most important things to keep the earth from becoming extremely unbalanced and unhealthy.

Works Cited

  1. Balk, D., Leyk, S., Jones, B., Montgomery, M. R., & Clark, A. (2018). New approaches to spatially consistent urban mapping and metrics. Population and Environment, 39(1), 1-27.
  2. Churkina, G. (2015). The role of urbanization in the global carbon cycle. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 13(4), 195-202.
  3. Ellis, E. C. (2015). Ecology in an anthropogenic biosphere. Ecological Monographs, 85(3), 287-331.
  4. Güneralp, B., Zhou, Y., Ürge-Vorsatz, D., Gupta, M., Yu, S., Patel, P. L., ... & Zhang, Q. (2017). Global scenarios of urban density and its impacts on building energy use through 2050. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(34), 8945-8950.
  5. Klemm, W. R., Colson, G., & Covington, W. W. (2016). Expanding the social-ecological system framework: From fisheries to forestry. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 19, 12-20.
  6. Newman, P., & Kenworthy, J. (2015). The end of automobile dependence: How cities are moving beyond car-based planning. Island Press.
  7. Pickett, S. T. A., Cadenasso, M. L., Grove, J. M., Nilon, C. H., Pouyat, R. V., Zipperer, W. C., & Costanza, R. (2001). Urban ecological systems: linking terrestrial ecological, physical, and socioeconomic components of metropolitan areas. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics, 32(1), 127-157.
  8. Richardson-Price, A. (2016). The soil depletion crisis. Earth Island Journal, 31(2), 28-31.
  9. Tiebout, C. M. (1956). A pure theory of local expenditures. Journal of Political Economy, 64(5), 416-424.
  10. Wilson, E. O. (2016). Half-earth: Our planet's fight for life. Liveright Publishing.
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Dr. Oliver Johnson

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Review Of The Modern Global Issue Of Urban Sprawl. (2021, December 16). GradesFixer. Retrieved May 21, 2024, from
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