World's first megalopolis promises to house 500,000,000 people
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The world's first ever megalopolis is promising to accommodate a staggering 500,000,000 people once work on it is completed.
As with such an ambitious project, the mega-zone will not be fully completely finished until the start of the next century. But the world is already watching the first-ever megalopolis evolve.
The zone will stretch almost 1,000 km along Africa's west coast, passing through five countries in the process.
It will start in Ivory Coast's Abidjan, ending up in Nigeria's capital Lagos - and will eventually house half a billion people.
On its journey, it will also pass through Ghana, Togo and Benin, with the coastal cities of Takoradi, Accra, Prampram, Lome and Cotonou receiving huge development projects.
But work has already started, with more high-rise towers, hotels, shopping complexes and offices popping up along the long stretch of coastline.
And, obviously, as the countries continue to grow, the population will grow, as more jobs usually means more people.
Currently, Africa is home to 17 percent of the world's population, with the UN predicting that the continent's population will increase to four million by 2100 - 40 percent of the world's total population.
And by this time, a staggering half a billion people are expected to be living within the megalopolis.
Part of this will be a new state-of-the-art motorway along the Gulf of Guinea, connecting Abidjan to Lagos.
The money for the rather expensive £12.6 billion new motorway has already been raised by African Development Bank chiefs, who say that the new stretch of road will be up to six lanes wide.
Also, part of the plans is to jazz up and enhance so-called minor cities into major cities to provide more jobs, accommodation, tourist attractions and more.
One city set to undergo a major upgrade is Accra, the capital of Ghana.
An almost one £1 billion project by authorities has been revealed in an effort to boost tourism numbers.
They aim to do this by building new fancy hotels, shopping centers and offices in the capital.
Howard French - a global affairs writer - has described the plans as a 'megalopolis in the making'.
He told the Guardian: "This [stretch] has come to be seen by many experts as the world’s most rapidly urbanising region, a megalopolis in the making – that is, a large and densely clustered group of metropolitan centres.
"Abidjan, with 8.3 million people, will be almost as large as New York City is today.
"The story of the region’s small cities is equally dramatic.
"They are either becoming major urban centres in their own right, or – as with places like Oyo in Nigeria, Takoradi in Ghana, and Bingerville in Ivory Coast – they are gradually being absorbed by bigger cities.
"Meanwhile, newborn cities are popping into existence in settings that were all but barren a generation ago."
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