Evaluating the Main Challenges to a Sustainable Physical Environment in Benin City

Onwuanyi, N.1,* and Ojo, E. P.2

1Department of Estate Management, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
2Department of Geomatics, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria

*Corresponding Author: ndubisi.onwuanyi@uniben.edu

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 Vol. 5 No. 1  | March 2021 | Pages 222 – 233

https://doi.org/10.36263/nijest.2021.01.0268   |   Cite this article

Abstract

ABSTRACT

In the shaping of cities as physical environments, planning governance is a principal factor which has sustainability implications for the entire urban system. This suggests that planning governance is a factor which has the potential to contribute to the occurrence of environmental challenges as well their resolution. Nigeria’s cities are facing many environmental challenges which constitute threats to sustainable development. This paper examines the main challenges to the development of a sustainable physical environment in Benin City, Nigeria’s ninth largest urban centre by population. Relying on archival records and observation, the study evaluates the city’s major physical environmental problems and their connection with planning governance; and thereafter, undertakes a comparison of planning governance features in the city with practice in the now sustainable, but once unsustainable environment of London City. The findings are that planning governance exerts a critical influence on the sustainable urban physical environment as in London City; that Benin City’s weak planning governance (as manifested by the absence of a master plan, inadequate personnel and equipment, a low public awareness of planning laws, a low level of compliance and a general lack of enforcement) is contributory to the emergence and subsistence of its environmental challenges. The conclusion is that the subsisting environmental challenges of Benin City are rooted in planning governance which, as presently run, lacks the capacity to achieve a sustainable physical environment. It is recommended that the city be re-directed to a trajectory of sustainable physical development through sweeping changes in planning governance and public enlightenment.

Keywords: Benin City, Environmental challenges, Physical planning, Sustainable development

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Onwuanyi, N. and Ojo, E. P. 2021. Evaluating the Main Challenges to a Sustainable Physical Environment in Benin City. Nigerian Journal of Environmental Sciences and Technology, 5(1), pp. 222-233. https://doi.org/10.36263/nijest.2021.01.0268


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