The challenges of urban planning in Kabul: formalizing the informal

            <img src="" border="0" /><em>Barely built for a million people, Kabul, now has close to five million residents with the majority &ndash; 80% &ndash; still living in informal, unplanned areas [...]. More than one million properties still need to be officially registered, according to City for All, a government urban planning initiative. [...]

But while decades of war have destroyed much of the capital, an urban revolution is growing, creating small pockets of peace.

The Guardian‘s Stefanie Glinski writes about the efforts residents and the local government in the rapidly growing Afghan capital are taking to cope with the overwhelming urbanization, turn informal settlements into formal ones, set urban planning goals, and rediscover architectural heritage and craftsmanship that has defined the region for centuries.

“I don’t want our children to forget about our historical background,” the article quotes an Afghan master carpenter. “Both regime changes and war destroyed our country. As is growing, many modern buildings are put up carelessly. We can’t forget about our architectural history and its beauty.”

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