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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Role of Medium-Sized Towns in the Spatial Integration of Nigeria
Author:Okafor, Francis C.
Periodical:African Urban Quarterly
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:regional development
small towns
Urbanization and Migration
Abstract:Evidence relating to the urbanization process in Nigeria shows two clear trends: a high rate of growth of the largest towns and the emergence of a few urban poles. The resultant pattern of polarization is not conducive to the spatial diffusion of development because it defeats the aim of trying to spread the benefits of development as widely as possible. Recent government policies on regional development in Nigeria have resulted in the growth of a few medium-sized towns. This paper traces the evolution of these towns and their functions particularly with regard to the restructuring of population distribution and their contributions as development poles and employment centres. The paper further suggests a strategy for sustained spatial integration in Nigeria using the medium-sized towns. It is argued that in order to achieve spatially balanced growth in Nigeria, government development policies will have to de-emphasize urban concentration and more consistently promote strategies that will further create and nurture the growth of more medium-sized towns. Notes, ref.