The rural areas are engulfed by the urbanization and cities are becoming bigger and larger in order to occupy the population. The Office of National Statistics defines rural areas as population below 10,000 people and divides it into sub categories of town and fringe, villages or hamlets and isolated dwellings. The Defra Local Authority classified the rural areas basing on the rural population percentage within the District or Unitary Authority. (CRC, 2008)
As per the United Nations Data, total rural population of world in the year 1950 was 1,798,297 and it is predicted to reach 2,792,995 till 2050. And the total urban population of world in the year 1950 was 736,796 and it is assumed that the number will reach 6,398,291 in the year 2050. The above facts and figures indicate that the numbers will double in the case of rural areas whereas the population in the urban area is going to increase at much brisk pace. According to same source, it is reported that by 2050, 86% of the most developed nations will be urbanized keeping the rural areas to 14%. (http://esa.un.org) In view of the above, it is necessary to evaluate and assess the future implications to cope with ever increasing urban population and migration from rural areas to cities and segregation of rural areas from development activities.
Spatial Planning is considered as what can and what should ha...
(www.ssiacymru.org.uk) Spatial Planning in England is revolutionizing with new system abolishing strategic structure and unitary development plans. (www.planningportal.gov.uk)
In view of the increasing population trends all over the world, the government is left with no option other than to expand its boundaries of cities to occupy its citizens who are migrating from rural towns to urban cities. Moreover today's major cities are agglomeration of small rural towns or suburban areas which were remotely linked to cities. According to Citymayors Statistics for the year 2006, London has a population of 8,278,000 with an area of 1,623 Sq.Km and measured population density at 5,100 people per sq.km. It is predicted that by 2020 the population of London would touch down to 7.59 million at an -0.02%. (www.citymayors.com) The development of urbanization will reduce the rural population growth rate and rural population of Europe is reported to be declining steadily since 1950 at the rate of -0.54% per year during 1975-2000 and will continue at the rate of -1.31% during 2000-2030. (Gerard,et al, 2004)
The need for spatial planning was contributed by number of factors such as technological changes in communication and transport, Single Market concept, challenges of globalization of the economy making it necessary to strengthen its ties with distant partners, forthcoming enlargement calls for an overall strategic approach for the development relating to transport, energy and communication networks. (http://ec.europa.eu) Various initiatives and polices taken by the governments to develop the urban cities and provide basic necessities ignoring the natural resources and environmental benefits of rural areas.