An analysis of the changes occurring in middle income housing in developing countries: A case study for Buruburu

Societies have developed different social structures which to a considerable extent are based
on differences in the social organization of residence leading to creation of products of different
dominant ideologies. Housing is one such element in social structure. In his book, ‘Housing and
Social Theory’, Kemeny states that a society with a highly collectivized forms of housing is likely
to have also a well-developed welfare state. By extension, planning for sustainable
neighborhood can be likened to planning for the welfare of the residents in the neighborhood
and the society at large.
The changes in the state welfare in societies triggers changes in the character of residential
neighborhoods, which could be compromising the sustainability of the estate if not constrained.
Changes in BuruBuru phase 2 in the form of developments without due consideration of the
support infrastructure and non-conformity to planning standards triggered this study in order to
analyze the residential development environment in the estate. The study was aimed at
examining the changes occurring in BuruBuru phase 2 and investigate the factors driving the
changes. Other objectives were to examine the development control measures put in place to
control development as well as examine the planning problems and challenges facing the estate
and suggest possible ways of improving the situation in BuruBuru Phase 2.
The study was based on BuruBuru phase 2 which is part of the extensive BuruBuru estate
developed for middle income earners in 1970s. The estate at large has been experiencing
changes in the urban form and structure due to pressure for the increasing demand for housing
which has been triggered by the increasing population. Construction of extensions coupled with
encroachments on access road and open spaces have led to a disruption of the functioning of
the estate.
The study revealed public amenities in the estate were fast declining, as population densities
kept increasing and thus the carrying capacity of the estate getting surpassed. Also the
construction of extensions has led to changing of views. All this were attributed to inadequate
capacity of planning and administrative institutions for shaping and regulating development thus
creating an atmosphere for uncontrolled development.
Some of the recommendation of this study includes stepping up efforts to constrain further
change, controlling development and preparation of a redevelopment plan for the neighborhood.


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