All efforts towards sustainable development globally are examined upon which suggestions are presented on how sustainable physical development can be achieved in developing. Sustainable physical planning concept is a shift from sustained growth of a society to the level whereby such growth does not jeopardize the need of the future generation. Sustainable development is predicated on the articulation and incorporation of environmental and human needs in the pursuit of economic growth and development objectives. Sustainable physical development came into the debate. in 1990 on the need to create “green cities”

Some definitions linked social and economic development to environmental development, the World Health Organisation in1992 opinion was that sustainable urban development should be concerned with the achievement of more productive, stable and innovative economies at low resource use.
World Commission on Environment and Development definition in 1987) emphasized meeting the “needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generation to meet their own needs became the popularly embraced definition.

Sustainable Physical Planning and Human Settlement

Sustainable Physical Planning - Sustainable Physical Planning Challenges and Development

The concept of sustainable physical planning is an attempt to articulate and incorporate environmental and human needs in the pursuit of economic growth and development. It is a process of change in which the exploitation of resources, investments, application of technology and institutional change are in harmony and enhances both current and future potential to meet human needs and aspirations. The World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED), in 1987) known as “Our Common Future” defines sustainable physical planning as one that meets the need of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.

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More prominence was given to the concept of sustainable physical planning due to its emergence as one of the key resolutions of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in 1992 held at Rio de Janeiro and seconded by the Habitat Conference at Istanbul, 1996, whose emphasis were on the need for sound environmental management in order to achieve the objectives of sustainable development.

At the global level Agenda, 21 of the Earth Summit concern for the sustainability of cities is at two levels, first at the global level, it involves a range of issues concerning long term sustainability of the earth. Secondly, at the local level, it involves the possibility that urban life may be undermined from within because of congestion, pollution, waste generation and they’re accompanying social and economic consequences.

Sustainability in the broad area of physical development particularly, human settlements goes beyond conventional concerns as better social conditions, equity and better environmental standards, to issues such as concern for the impact of city-based production and consumption activities within and outside of the city.

In the area of human settlement basic yardsticks of sustainability as established by the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (UNCHS) in 1996 are quality of life of inhabitants, scale of non-renewable resource use, the extent of recycling and re-use, the scale and nature of renewable resource use, waste emanating from production and consumption activities as well as the impact of these wastes on environmental health and ecological systems.

The place of Physical Development in the attainment of Sustainable Physical Planning

Physical planning like other areas of human endeavour has a credible role to play if sustainable physical planning is to be achieved in any society. Urban planning has a central role in achieving sustainability. Though, urban planning is a service and does not necessarily result directly into goods. urban planning is judged by its product through the outcome of the implementation of the planning provisions and programmes.

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It provides a plan-document to be used for the physical development of the human habitat. By implication, urban planning provides the led system for “building” the environment which is fundamental for the attainment of sustained control and development of the environment. Physical planning documents are vehicles for environmental development in the immediate term and set the direction of future growth.

This is achieved through the use of a plan diagram backed-up with many legislative guidelines and administrative reports. Therefore sustainable physical planning and management of human settlement hinges greatly on the effectiveness of physical development plans. This involve the reconciliation of land uses, provision of the right site for the right use, control of development, provision of facilities, services and public goods, preservation, protection and conservation of resources, preservation of heritage among others.

Culled from Semantic Scholar | Challenges of Sustainable Physical Planning and Development in Metropolitan Lagos

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