Researchers have predicted that no fewer than 30 million people can live in Lagos by 2035, turning it into the largest mega city on the African continent.
According to a statement by the African Property Investment in Abuja on Thursday, researchers also predicted that by 2030, Lagos, Cairo and Kinshasa would each have a population of 20 million.
Luanda, Dar es Salaam and Johannesburg were also predicted would have a population of more than 10 million by 2030.
The API noted that with rapid population growth in African cities, urban planning had proven to be ineffective with private development often deterred by ‘opaque or inappropriate regulations’.
The property development and investment organisation added that African cities had, until recently, failed to keep pace with the concentration of people.
The statement disclosed: “When it comes to investments in infrastructure, industrial and commercial structures, and affordable formal housing, African cities have, until now, failed to keep pace with the concentration of people.
“In Dar es Salaam, 28 per cent of residents live at least three to a room; in Abidjan, that number rises to 50 per cent.
“In Lagos, Nigeria, two out of three people dwell in slums.”
The API pointed out that the World Bank’s African Cities report found that in several cities, built-up areas were scattered throughout the centre, with more than 30 per cent of land within five kilometres of the city centres still left undeveloped.
The organisation noted that the rapid growth of Africa’s urban populations would place a new demand for infrastructure, housing and other physical structures, and amenities in the next 20 years.
It said that to meet the new demand, city leaders and planners needed adaptable strategies.
The group said it had commenced plans for a summit where experts, Africa’s real estate and built environment developers and investors would debate and craft a vision of what an African city should look like.
It stated: “The API Summit and Expo 2017 Future Cities Africa sub-conference will look at how African governments and institutions can help formalise land markets, clarify property rights, and better leverage off land values to finance Africa’s urban development.’’
The Managing Director for API events, Kfir Rusin, said the continent could not move forward without proper discussions on the planning, infrastructure and urban development requirements of African cities.
Rusin explained that such discussion and information sharing would enable African cities thrive and grow.
He said: “The Future Cities Africa sub-conference will take an in depth look into how African Cities can better open its doors to the world, while creating more economically dense and inclusive urban areas.”
The Africa Property Investment Summit and Expo would hold in South Africa from August 24 to 25.