Sindh’s Imbalanced Urbanization: Seeking Sustenance through Revival of Historic Urban Centres

  •  Anila Naeem    


Sindh, Pakistan’s second largest province with 30.44M inhabitants has always been the country’s most urbanized region; but its urban population is un-evenly distributed – i.e. 71% concentrating in only three major cities. In addition, Sindh is most industrialized and resourceful in terms of expended natural resources - contributing highest national revenue, yet getting only 23.28% in national revenue transfer; reflecting exploitative policies; in return providing insufficient compensation to supplement the privations.

Recent IUCN reports identify mismanagement of natural resources as a major cause for growing socio-economic disparity, poverty alleviation and urban-rural divide in the region. Seeds of these problems are accredited to colonial period changes; further worsened by latter 20th century developments transforming the landscape.  Lack of participatory community involvement in development processes and disregard for existing built fabric has resulted in loss of unique historic environments; requiring recognition as invaluable regional resources. This paper seeks to instigate a consciousness towards significance of historic urban centers, identify directions to reinstate their value as historic, economic and environmental assets, and gauge their potentials for revival; restructuring a balanced and sustained urbanization in the region.

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