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MEDS-042: Issues and Challenges in Urban Planning and Development

MEDS-042: Issues and Challenges in Urban Planning and Development

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2022-23

If you are looking for MEDS-042 IGNOU Solved Assignment solution for the subject Issues and Challenges in Urban Planning and Development, you have come to the right place. MEDS-042 solution on this page applies to 2022-23 session students studying in MADVS, PGDUPDL, MACSR, MAUS, MAEVS courses of IGNOU.

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Assignment Code: MEDS-042 / TMA / July 2022 – January 2023

Course Code: MEDS- 042

Assignment Name: Issues and Challenges in Urban Planning and Development

Year: 2022 - 2023

Verification Status: Verified by Professor


Answer all the questions. Each question carries 20 marks.


Q 1. What is urban housing? Briefly discuss urban housing policies and plans of India.

Ans) Urban housing refers to the type of housing that is found in urban areas, which are typically characterized by high population density, diverse and mixed land use, and a developed economy. Urban housing can come in many forms, ranging from single-family homes, apartments, townhouses, and condominiums, to high-rise buildings and mixed-use developments. In urban areas, the demand for housing is high due to the concentration of job opportunities, cultural attractions, and other amenities. This demand leads to a competitive housing market and often results in high housing costs and limited availability, particularly in the most desirable areas. To address the need for affordable housing, many cities have implemented policies to encourage the development of affordable housing units and protect tenants from eviction or gentrification. Despite the challenges, living in an urban area also offers many benefits, including access to public transportation, a vibrant cultural scene, and a diverse community. Ultimately, urban housing is an important aspect of sustainable urban development, as it affects the liveability, economic prosperity, and social cohesion of cities.


Urban Housing Policies and Plans

Urban housing policies and plans in India are aimed at addressing the growing demand for housing in urban areas and improving the standard of living for the urban population. The main objectives of these policies and plans include providing affordable housing for all, improving living conditions in slums and informal settlements, and encouraging sustainable and inclusive urban development.


One of the key initiatives of the Indian government in this regard is the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), which was launched in 2015 to provide affordable housing to all by 2022. Under PMAY, the government provides subsidies and other financial incentives to eligible households to purchase or construct a house. The scheme targets economically weaker sections and low-income groups, and also provides support for the development of slum rehabilitation projects. Another important policy aimed at addressing urban housing challenges is the National Urban Housing and Habitat Policy, which was launched in 2007. The policy provides a comprehensive framework for addressing the housing needs of urban residents and lays down the principles for urban housing and habitat development. The policy emphasizes the need for affordable housing, inclusiveness, sustainability, and the involvement of the private sector in the development of urban housing.

In addition to these policies, various states and cities in India have also launched their own housing schemes and initiatives. For example, the Delhi Development Authority provides housing for low-income groups and slum dwellers, and the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) provides affordable housing to economically weaker sections in the state. To encourage the development of sustainable and inclusive housing in urban areas, the Indian government has also launched several initiatives to promote green building practices, such as the Green Building Rating System and the Energy Conservation Building Code. These initiatives aim to reduce the environmental impact of building construction and operation, and to promote the use of energy-efficient and environmentally friendly building materials and technologies.


In conclusion, the Indian government has taken several steps to address the growing demand for housing in urban areas and to improve the standard of living for the urban population. However, the implementation of these policies and plans remains a challenge, and there is still a long way to go to achieve the goal of affordable housing for all. Nevertheless, the initiatives taken by the government in this regard are a step in the right direction and will help to create a more sustainable and inclusive urban housing landscape in India.


Q 2. Discuss the urban transport management system with suitable examples.

Ans) Transport System Management is the planning, monitoring, and controlling or influencing of traffic modes. It aims to:

  1. Maximise the effectiveness of the use of existing infrastructure.

  2. Ensure reliable and safe operation of transport.

  3. Address environmental goals, and

  4. Ensure fair allocation of infrastructure space (road space, rail slots, etc.) among competing users.


Transport System Management (TSM) maximises the capacity of the street system and reduces the demand on it. Although some of them may be expensive to implement, TSM measures are typically low-cost localized improvements that attempt to take full advantage of the existing street infrastructure thereby increasing the efficiency of the street system.


The spectrum of TSM measures is wide; the measures that are applicable will generally fall into one of six categories listed below:


Regulatory Techniques

The regulatory techniques are further divided into 5 management techniques listed below:

  1. One way Street: This is a technique where vehicle moments are possible only in one direction. It optimizes the road capacity and minimizes the conflict.

  2. Reversible Streets: It is a technique adopted on the way where one direction traffic is about twice the other direction. To adopt this technique another parallel street should be available to accommodate that traffic.

  3. Reversible lanes: It is a lane in which traffic may travel in either direction, depending on certain conditions. Additional lane should be provided to the peak flow direction by squeezing the carriage way width of opposite traffic flow.

  4. Turning Moment Restrictions: It is a technique used where the turning movement of the vehicles is restricted or banned to minimise the conflict points.

  5. Closing Streets: It is a technique adopted to improve the flow on the main street by minimising conflicts. The side street may be used for the parking purposes or the pedestrian purposes according to the requirements.


Traffic Control Devices

The various traffic control devices used for the traffic management are:

  1. Traffic Signs: Traffic signs or road signs are signs erected at the side of or above roads to provide information to road users.

  2. Traffic Signals: These are important for orderly traffic movement, and it also helps the pedestrians to cross in heavy traffic stream.

  3. Road Markings: Road surface marking is any kind of device or material that is used on a road surface in order to convey official information.

  4. Computerised Signal Control device: ITS technology is used to regulate the traffic flow. Cycle time is optimized according to the cycle volume at morning, evening and non-peak hours.

  5. Traffic Cone and Drums: These are portable temporary devices used to delineate the diverted path.

  6. Speed Breakers: This is a traffic control device which alerts the driver of the change in condition and to break the speed of the vehicle.


Traffic Segregation Techniques

The various traffic segregation techniques used are:

  1. Vehicle-Vehicle Segregation: It is a technique used to separate slow moving vehicle from the fast moving. Basically, it is observed in CBD area where slow moving vehicle are confined to outer area.

  2. Pedestrian-Vehicle Segregation: It is a technique used to separate the pedestrians from the moving vehicles.

  3. Time Segregation: It is a technique meant to regulate the specific traffics at different times of the day. For example, heavy vehicle is not allowed in peak hours in busy area.


Demand Management Techniques

The various demand management techniques used are:

  1. Parking Restriction: It is a technique where parking may be restricted in the CBD area or the core areas where there is limitation of space for parking. On street parking avoided if traffic flow is more on the corridor. For example, use of electronic pricing systems that accommodate various payment methods and rates and allow motorists to pay for just the amount of time they will be parked.

  2. Parking Pricing: It is a tool used for enforcing on-street parking policy, usually related to the

  3. traffic and mobility management policies in order to reduce the demand for parking in the core areas.

  4. Off Street Parking and Pay Area: According to land availability and the demand for parking, off street parking is created with a specific parking tariff.

  5. On Street Parking Meters: A meter may be installed on the on-street parking such that the

  6. demand reduces and the traffic flow is not hampered.

  7. Park and Ride Systems: Large off street parking is created to enable motorist to park their vehicle and switch to public transport to reach work place, CBD etc.


Bus Priority Techniques

The various bus priority techniques used are:

  1. Bus Priority Manoeuvre: It is a technique to give priority to buses by permitting them turning movements which are prohibited to other vehicles.

  2. Bus Lanes: A bus lane or bus only lane is lane restricted to buses on certain days and times, and generally used to speed up public transport.

  3. Bus Priority Signal System: By providing Bus priority signal, public transport may be promoted.


Self-Enforcing Techniques

These are some techniques which ensure traffic discipline automatically. The various techniques used are:

  1. Central Divider

  2. Railing

  3. Parabolic Dividers

  4. Channelisers

  5. Parking Notches

  6. Sleeping Policeman.


Q 3. Describe various dimensions of urban crime. Suggest measures for strengthening urban safety and security.

Ans) Cities have always symbolised wealth and power. They're also high-risk targets. They also gather people and resources. Cities encourage innovation and crime because they provide anonymity. Cities also enforce law and order. These contradictions shape crime and safety over time.


The history of crime and punishment is as much about maintaining power and control in society as it is about punishing and regulating better. Three things. First, defining crime and labelling criminals is social. Because private property is legal, encroachment is a crime. Bigamy is illegal when society values monogamy. Thus, our changing definition of crime shapes crime trends. Second, social power and control shape criminal labelling, justice, and punishment. Thus, power and control shape crime and who gets caught and punished. Finally, safety trajectories include knowledge of control and punishment technologies. Modern society understands crime very well. Thus, modern crime includes amniocentesis, white collar crime like trade malpractices, corruption, internet and mobile telephony crimes, murder, harassment, and property and asset crimes.


Strengthening Urban Safety

Popular city crime prevention and control measures include:


Enhancement of Policing: Most of the time, the state's response to crime is to increase the number of police officers. If you look at the number of policemen per person in Indian cities, you can see that the level of police work is really bad. Even though city policing systems need to be improved, they need to be seen as part of a larger reform of the police system that also includes improving things like transportation, communication, weapons, and working and living conditions.


Imprisonment of Criminals: The other usual response of the government to crime is to put the person in jail. In the United States and Russia, there are now more than five people in prison for every 1,000 people living there. The average for the rest of the world is less than 1.7 per 1,000 people, while Japan only has 0.36 per 1,000. This policy isn't very effective because it doesn't cut down on the number of crimes. It also takes money away from things that could be done to prevent social problems and makes some groups look bad.


Coordinated and Citizen Responsive Systems: When cities are poor, there are not enough security guards or buildings to keep people safe. What is needed are security systems that work with the people to stop crime. One system like this is shown by the Mohalla Committees in Bhiwandi, Maharashtra, and how they worked even when there were riots. Citizen policing is a way for people to work together to control crime in the city.


Reorientation of Security Services: Most of the time, security services like the police are the first ones to know about crimes. They also do a lot to keep people from getting into trouble. Experience has shown that a biased police system can make criminals out of people from marginalised groups. However, the police could also serve as role models for these people and help them fit in. So, one of the most important parts of planning for safety is to refocus the police on such a "developmental" role.


Reducing Vulnerability of Marginal Groups: There is an awfully close link between crime and marginalised groups, which creates a cycle of small crimes, being labelled, feeling unfairly treated, getting angry, and then committing more serious crimes. The cycle of exclusion in society gets worse the more it is built into the system. In these situations, criminals may be caught, but the amount of crime almost stays the same because new criminals come from similar backgrounds. The only way to break the same is to try to reduce exclusion and fix the problems that make marginal populations vulnerable.


Incorporating Safety Principles into Urban Design: Most people know that every crime has a victim and a person who did it, but less often do they think about the place where the crime happened. Crime can happen less often if changes are made to the way the environment is set up.


Q 4. What is urban poverty? Discuss causes and consequences of urban poverty.

Ans) Urban poverty refers to the state of poverty experienced by individuals and families living in urban areas, such as cities and towns. It is characterized by a lack of access to basic needs such as food, housing, healthcare, and education, as well as limited opportunities for employment and economic advancement. Urban poverty can have a profound impact on the well-being of individuals and families, leading to a range of negative outcomes such as poor health, crime, and social exclusion. It is often exacerbated by a lack of affordable housing, high levels of income inequality, and limited access to basic services such as education and healthcare. Urban poverty can also have wider implications for society, contributing to social unrest and instability, as well as exacerbating existing economic and social inequalities.


Causes and Consequences of Urban Poverty

Some of the important causes of urban poverty are narrated below.


Urbanization and Growth of Slums: Migration from rural areas to cities is often cited as a cause of poverty in cities. Contractual migrant workers are used in construction and other jobs in the informal sector in cities and towns where there is a need for this kind of work. This shows how these workers live and work. Almost none of the state's policies protect or cover these workers in any way. When these migrants come with their families, including children, it can be hard to meet their needs for better health care, food, and education.


Inequalities—Economic, Social and Locational: Urban poverty is characterised by a lack of basic services. Urban areas are generally better off than rural areas in most areas. In cities, the issue with water supply, especially for poorer households, is access and quantity. Twenty-nine percent of urban poor households rent. Urban poor are homeless, in makeshift shelters, or in slums and squatter settlements. They may not have citizenship papers despite long-term residency.


Availability of Basic Services: Lack of basic services in poor urban areas is another thing that shows how urban poverty affects men and women differently. In the case of water, it is common for the supply not to be regular or on time or for the pressure on public standpipes to be too high. This leads to frequent disagreements, some of which get violent. Since women do more of these tasks, they are more likely to be affected by these problems.


Migration and Mobility: In development economics, it is a well-known fact that rural-to-urban migration is increasing, even though there are positive marginal products in agriculture and high unemployment rates in cities. Migration from the country to the city will continue as long as the expected real income in the city is higher than the real agricultural product. Prospective rural migrants want to get the most out of their move, so they look for jobs in cities.


Unemployment and Low Wage Rate: A formal urban labour market minimum wage creates permanent urban unemployment. The gap between urban formal sector jobs at this wage rate or higher and rural migrants seeking urban employment causes this. Expected utility analysis can model rural migrant decision-making. Vacancies to job seekers determine the likelihood of getting a high-paying urban formal sector job. If a formal sector job is not available, a low-wage urban informal sector job is possible. An expected urban wage is a weighted average of formal and informal sector wages. Whether the expected wage exceeds the agricultural wage determines migration. Migrants migrate if the urban wage is higher than the agricultural wage.


Q 5. What are economic values of water bodies and wet lands? Suggests measures for revitalizing urban water bodies.

Ans) Water bodies and wetlands have significant economic values that contribute to the overall well-being and prosperity of societies.


Economic Values of Water Bodies

Water bodies are important for keeping people alive and healthy. It is thought that water bodies take up about 6.4% of the area of the earth. Of these water bodies, about 30% are bags, 26% are fens, 20% are swamps, and 15% are flood plains. India has 67,429 bodies of water that cover 4.1 million hectares. Out of these, 2,175 are natural and cover 1.5 million hectares, while 65,254 were made by people and cover 206 million hectares.


Ecology, landscape, recreation, history, culture, drainage, and drainage matter to people. Urban planning still involves optimising water use. Sewage systems connect water bodies in many developing nations. Higher effluent temperatures, more water, pollutants, and waste, and water body changes affect water. Damaged water bodies lose resistance to stress and adaptability. Water stress destroys ecosystem services, hurting many, especially in cities. Cities' economies and societies depend on water bodies, waterways, and wetlands.


Economic Values of Wetlands

Wetlands usually border rivers, lakes, or the ocean. Wetlands export or import organic and inorganic nutrients due to their location. It has a top ecosystem. Wetlands restore groundwater, reduce flood damage, and provide recreational space. Wetlands change local climate by increasing evaporation and absorbing heat during droughts. It also blocks fierce winds. The wetlands do many things. The sun and other ecosystems power it. Wetlands can export goods and services to humans and other ecosystems. Remember that humans can improve or degrade wetlands' services. Both natural and social scientists agree that wetlands are disappearing worldwide due to a lack of understanding of their value. People have tried to calculate this ecosystem's value. Wetland ecosystems are dynamic, but human actions can change them.


In conclusion, water bodies and wetlands provide a wide range of economic benefits to society, contributing to sustainable development, food security, and human well-being. The protection and conservation of these ecosystems is essential to ensuring these benefits are maintained and sustained over the long term.

Measures for Revitalizing Urban Water Bodies

The measures taken at different points of time are given below:


Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs): The Bhoj Wetland Authority in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh; the Chilika Development Authority (CDA) in Orissa; the Loktak Development Authority (LDA) in Manipur; the J&K Lakes and Waterways Development Authority in J&K; and the Jai Vikas Samiti in Udaipur, Rajasthan are some of the SPVs measures taken by different state governments.


Restoration Plans: Different state governments are restoring water bodies by treating the watershed or catchment area of lakes, taking steps to save soil, and making small drainage improvements in forests. In some cases, steps are also taken to remove weeds and use bioremediation. In a few places, the people have been asked to take part in the management of water bodies. The state governments have also started programmes to teach people about the environment and make them aware of how important biodiversity is and how much the local community depends on natural resources.


Institutional Mechanism: Water bodies are being fixed up by a number of organisations, both government and non-government and community based. The National Lake Conservation Plan (NLCP) is a good example of a group that works to make a complete plan for restoring water bodies. Some of them are preventing pollution, treating catchment areas, getting rid of sediment and weeds, and doing research and development.


Role of International Institutions: International Institutions such as the WWF, UNDP, UNEP, ADB and World Bank are providing technical and financial assistance for the restoration of water bodies.


Role of Judiciary and Legal Interventions to stop Degradation: The courts getting involved is a big step toward stopping the lakes from getting worse. When it comes to protecting the environment, the Indian courts have been very active. As the Supreme Court of India said in a PIL about Badal Khol and Surajkund Lakes, Haryana State has to protect the two lakes from pollution and damage to the environment.


Policy Interventions: The National Water Policy, which was updated in 2002, gives institutional mechanisms that plan and manage water resources based on hydrological units a lot of weight. It also stresses the importance of a participatory, multi-sectoral, and multi-disciplinary approach to managing water bodies. It says that the existing institutions at different levels of the water resources sector will need to be reoriented, reorganised, or even made.

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