Urbanization which is resultant of human activities plays a large part in urban sprawling. Unplanned development of housing facilities, physical infrastructure and the influx of people into cities all play a large part in placing the existing infrastructure under pressure thus sprawling. It is the activities of members of the society in seeking betterment of their lives and opportunities to survive that lead to sprawling which minimizes the efficiency of developed infrastructure and encroachment of substandard housing that pose risks.
An ethical analysis of how sprawling is dealt with is important in the current society considering a large number of cities in both developed and developing nations experience sprawling in varied degrees. Analysis Human beings engage in economic activities to meet their needs which may be in bettering their lives or survival. An increase in the number of people in a city or any urban area could be resultant of increase in birth rate, high levels of economic development recorded by business entities operating in the said area, legal influx of immigrants and illegal influx of immigrants (Soule 78).
It is upon the government to ensure that irrespective of the influx of people into a given region the amenities are developed in a manner that ensure social needs of members of the society are well met. However, there exists a level after which the government or institutions that are charged with ensuring provision of social services fail or are unable to provide the required services and this leads to sprawling.
In an effort to deal with sprawling, many authorities turn to demolition of substandard housing a process that often leave thousand if not hundred of families homeless and therefore unable to cater for their basic housing needs (Soule 66). Denying hundreds of families their basic needs under the premise that demolition of their houses leads to better transport systems or other related developments brings about ethical questions.
Are the housing needs of the affected parties in government efforts to deal with sprawling less important with respect to the benefits accrued in implementing such strategies? No one can deny the negative effects that sprawling has on efficiency that can be attained in provision of social services. Transport systems, education provision and sewerage systems are some of the areas that are worst affected by sprawling (Bayer and Beauchamp 56). Cities like Los Angeles that are worst affected by sprawling record the worst traffic jams and have some of the worst social facilities (Gonzalez 36).
A measure that has been developed by the US to deal with sprawling is the implementation of tough immigration laws that make it hard for illegal immigrants that have actually played a considerable part in propagating urban sprawling to access social services. Though the measure may be effective in reducing the levels of illegal immigration thus addressing sprawl the effects that the law has on illegal immigration within the US makes Zimbabwe appear better. Implementing restrictive and segregative approaches to addressing a problem goes against non-maleficence (Gonzalez 25).
As much as addressing urban sprawling is of social importance it should not be done in a manner that is of harm to the parties whose good is being sought. Any strategy developed to address sprawling should be developed in a manner that ensures overall benefit to the society. Making it hard for people purported to be propagating sprawling to access social services and developing harsher immigration laws only serves to develop other social problems like insecurity and rise of diseases in the affected neighborhoods and is based o the false assumption that the stated entities are solely to blame for immigration.
What would the society be gaining if it has efficient transport systems while a majority are not housed? By developing strategies that address a social problem while developing others no good will have been done from a social wide perspective. Moreover, lack of housing which is a basic need is far more likely to lead to serious social problems like prostitution and degenerations of the society. It is however worth noting that reduction in the levels of sprawling or proper management of sprawling has positive effects in the provision of social services and efficiency that can be attained in economic activities.
Moreover, reduced sprawling leads to benefits that are sustainable in that better social infrastructure can be built on by other generations thus sustained efficiency in service delivery. One of the key principles that has to be considered in developing any social system is justice. Ensuring that good is done and not just consideration on the effects that an action will have on the society is important (Bayer and Beauchamp 16). Buildings and structures marked as being restrictive of positive development of a city need not be illegal structures.
In most cases to address sprawling a city may requires a restructuring where both legal and illegal structures may have to be moved (Gonzalez 25). Expansion of roads may delve into areas that were originally not reserved for roads thus infringing on others right to property. The fact that most judicial systems have stated such infringements as exceptions does not change the clear picture of injustice against individual right to own property developed by such strategies.
Conclusion Strategies used to deal with sprawling are in most cases unethical and go against individual rights. Such strategies benefit the society while hurting those involved and have the potential of leading to far more serious social issues. It is however worth noting that there are option that can be provided for low cost housing residents and strategies to avert the likelihood of influx of people in affected areas can also be developed.
Development of proper initial city plans that put into consideration influx of people and continually upgrade of social infrastructure can all be done without infringing on people rights to movement or housing if only ethical considerations were given any thought.
Bayer, Ronald and Beauchamp, Dan. Public health ethics: theory, policy, and practice. New York, NY: Oxford University Press US, 2007 Gonzalez, George. Urban Sprawl, Global Warming, and the Empire of Capital. Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2009 Soule, David. Urban sprawl: a comprehensive reference guide. Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group, 2006Sample Essay of AssignmentExpert.com