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How space design engenders cities sustenance, by experts

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Faced with increasing population, stakeholders in the built environment have stressed the role of space design in sustaining the future.

The stakeholders, who spoke at the Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA), Lagos Architects Forum (LAF) 2021, said space for the building is vital as Lagos is among cities in the world experiencing hyper-urbanisation.

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The Oniru of Iruland, Oba Abdulwasiu Omogbolahan Lawal, Abisogun 11, who spoke on the theme: “ From Space to place – Making Our City Work for all its Inhabitants,” said the world is undergoing massive urbanisation, at an unprecedented rate and Africa is not exempted.

Lagos, he said, is one of the few in the world undergoing hyper-urbanisation, with its attendant problems such as micro and macro slum developments, crippling traffic congestion, poor waste collection and management amongst others.

He said one of the things that have become clear particularly after the global health crisis, is the important role of public awareness in urban communities.

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According to him, it has become clearer that safer infrastructure and more open space are essential.

He said a city is all about connection, fostering connectivity is not only about transportation and communication.

At the heart of it, he said, is access, how people are connected to their immediate environment to green spaces and public spaces that enable cultural and civic engagements.

The Lagos former commissioner for Housing stressed that as designers, more effort has been put into making places for people beyond their homes and work.

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On his part, President, Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), Olutoyin Ayinde, regretted the insufficient plan to cater for Lagos, which has gone beyond from a megacity to a metacity.

Speaking on “ The City of Lagos: The Next Twenty-Five Years”, Ayinde said there is an urgent need for stakeholders to discuss the future of Lagos and other cities as well as communities.

Ayinde lamented that the present plan is insufficient to cater for the city of Lagos that has gone beyond being a megacity to a metacity, a term coined in 2006 by the UN-Habitat when the term megacity designated as cities of over 10 million people became inadequate.

He said The City of Lagos in the next 25 years, would probably be playing host to 40 million populations.

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Also, Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who declared the exhibition open, said the future belongs to the youths, hence the need to plan for space.

He stressed that the state has developed a 2050 master plan and only proper planning would ensure that the plan is scalable to drive the vision.

According to him, the large population of Lagos has created a source of concern with the huge influx of people.

Earlier, Chairman, Lagos chapter of Nigerian Institute of Architects, David Majekodunmi, said LAF has become a yearly event, where architects come together and openly discuss current issues that affect the practice of the Profession and solutions proffered.

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He said professionals have also benefited so much from the products and services displayed and the support given by the various manufacturers, building materials, suppliers and financial institutions.

According to the event is aimed at sensitising the various stakeholders in the built environment on steps and implementation strategies in achieving not just a mega-city.

To guarantee the future of the profession, Majekodunmi said students would be at the forefront of the construction industry in the next 25 years. hence the need to chart a vision for the future of the Lagos built environment.

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