Spatial development patterns can be well depicted by the development initiatives that have been set up to accomplish the spatial development in different regions of the world. Spatial development initiatives are aimed at ensuring that sustainable jobs are created in every locality of a country by identifying and facilitating new investments in different regions. They are mainly focused on fostering industrial development in areas where poverty and unemployment are at their highest state through increased governmental support in regions with poor social, economic conditions and in which there exists a huge economic potential. From this perspective, the private and public sector have to work hand in hand towards establishing participation opportunities in the forestry, agricultural, tourism, environment, mining, ports and infrastructure sectors by ensuring international competitiveness, regional co-operation and diversified ownership of development projects (Hendrik & Dries, 2011). The development initiatives are, however, associated with three main issues affecting the economic, environmental and social conditions of a region. In this essay, the key issues and their impacts are explored.
First and foremost, the spatial development patterns have led to a remarkable growth of the transport sector. This incorporates the growth of road networks so as to interconnect regions. Notably, this has enhanced the accessibility of regions that were once hardly accessible due to poor road conditions. Economically, this has led to improved trade activities in these regions which have boosted the living standards of the people located in these areas. Socially, the interconnection has aided the exchange of views and fueled cultural interactions in between these regions. A good example is the Spatial Development Initiatives that have led to the interconnection of parts of Africa through transport routes (mainly road networks) especially in Southern Africa interconnecting regions beyond countrys boundaries. For instance, a transport route that is under the Potential Resource-based African Sustainable Development Corridors project will connect Angola, Zambia, Mozambique, Cameroon, Tanzania, Malawi and Mozambique. This certainly is a significant step towards increased foreign trade. The development among these countries will reach a relatively similar level in due time (Hendrik & Dries, 2011).
Additionally, the enhanced transport network will consequently ease the mobility of labor among these countries. The people in the lowly developed countries will be able to move easily from their countries to those countries with better opportunities. In so doing, both the countries will contribute to improved standards of living of the working people and subsequently boost the economy. In other words, the goal to improve the transport sector boosts the accessibility of potential places, hence boosting the socio-economic nature of a given region. The Maputo development Corridor (MDC), a major import-export route connecting the North-Eastern provinces of South Africa to the capital and main port of Mozambique, is a good case study. The development corridor is a road connection between South Africa and Mozambique, which provides employment and good property development opportunities that stimulate growth and spatial interaction within the corridor and hence improving the socioeconomic state of the regions and the development is duly transmitted to South Africa as a country and also of Mozambique (Hendrik & Dries, 2011).
Another notable issue affecting the socioeconomic development from a spatial perspective is the rural-urban interactions. The spatial development is aimed at ensuring that there is a nearly equitable level of economic prosperity, living conditions, and development in the rural areas as there is in the urban centers. Consequently, there is development intensification in the rural areas of the economic, public and social functions. This is by building up of social amenities: hospitals, schools and other recreational centers and also setting up of industrial infrastructures which in turn create employment in rural areas. In so doing, the rural areas become capable of sustaining the community therein. As a result, rural-urban migration is substantially reduced, and resources are more or less evenly distributed. A good example is the regional development of Siberia, carried out between 2007 and 2012, where the agricultural sector was empowered by the provision of agricultural funds and industrial, agricultural infrastructure such that there is a traditional dependency on the agricultural sector as an economic activity. This was as a result of a rural development program with the new model of Common Agriculture Policy of the European Union aimed at regional spatial development (Maksin-Icic, Milijic, & Nenkovic-Riznic, 2009).
From a critical point of view, spatial development will lead to increased environmental degradation. There are high chances of increased greenhouse emissions, especially in areas where this was not the case. There will be heightened cases of pollutant emissions from the most developed industries. In other cases, more mining activities will lead to land degradation due to the land left bare. However, there are strategic plans which adhere to the National Environmental Protection Program and that are in accordance to the UN Millennium Development Goals will ensure that environmental sustainability is observed. Of interest is the use of alternative sources of energy such as the use of solar energy in place of fossil sourced fuels (Maksin-Icic, Milijic, & Nenkovic-Riznic, 2009).
Conclusively, the spatial development has impacted the economic, social and ecological sectors of a region greatly. Accessibility has been enhanced such that there has been great development (nearly equitable) in regions nationally and internationally. Migration has been eased in terms of labor and refugees. Rural-urban migration has been reduced. The population distribution has been preferably balanced off at a gradual rate. Cultural interactions have been heightened as the social sector has been improved through the creation of recreational sectors and enhancement of the transport network. Ecologically, the spatial development initiatives are encouraging environmental sustainability through the reasonable and regulated exploitation of natural resources and of importance, through the application of renewable and environmentally friendly sources of energy. Economically, spatial development has led to increased sources of income through encouraging public and private sector investments. This has resulted in improved living standards due to the reduction of unemployment. Therefore, spatial development has propagated economic sustainability in most of the regions, has improved the social networking through easy interconnections and finally has encouraged measures that ensure ecological sustainability even as there is development.
Hendrik, M. & Dries, H. (2011). THE POTENTIAL IMPACT ON PROPERTY AND SOCIO-ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT RESULTING FROM ROAD TRANSPORT CORRIDORS IN AFRICA: A CASE STUDY (1st ed., pp. 1-7). Netherlands: Management and Innovation for a Sustainable Built Environment. Retrieved from https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwj2nJKpvZDNAhXCXRoKHXMkCeIQFgglMAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fmisbe2011.fyper.com%2Fproceedings%2Fdocuments%2F24.pdf&usg=AFQjCNG9B236KkXgchOtCy-TcmM_pZKIwg&sig2=ysKypmBxZdCAEmeYIlvdcgMaksin-Icic, M., Milijic, S., & Nenkovic-Riznic, M. (2009). SPATIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING OF SUSTAINABLE REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT IN SIBERIA (1st ed., pp. 44-46). Siberia: SPANTIUM International Review. Retrieved from http://www.doiserbia.nb.rs/img/doi/1450-569X/2009/1450-569X0921039M.pdf
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