Geography Cat was delighted to receive this postcard showing the central business district of Dallas, Texas, USA as it looked in 1979. Here’s some pictures of it today:
Dallas has been growing very rapidly, as has its neighbour Fort Worth; the two are even referred to together as the Dallas Fort Worth Conurbation or DFW. Whilst researching Geography Cat found this very interesting article about their growth.
Urban growth is not the same as urbanisation. Urban growth is the physical increase in size of the shape taken up by a town or city. Urbanisation is the increase in the proportion of a population who live in an urban area compared to the proportion living in a rural area. Therefore, the two processes are related, but not identical. As a state, or a country becomes more urbanised it is to be expected that the cities will increase in size. It is possible that an urban area may experience growth whilst the level of urbanisation in the region does not change.
However the size of urban areas can be limited, maybe by natural factors such as the shoreline, or a range of mountains. Rivers used to be a limiting factor to urban growth, but techological and engineering advances mean they rarely limit growth now.
Urbanisation is increased by two factors; rural to urban migration and natural growth rate (birth rate minus death rate) in urban areas. Birth rates tend to be higher and death rates (slightly) lower in cities than in rural villages.
Geography Cat’s Learning Guaranteed blog has an article about this from a high school exam perspective too, click here to read it.