Delhi and Mumbai

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Rise of Delhi, Mumbai most dramatic urban growth story

The Times of India

Rukmini Shrinivasan | TIG

Of all the big cities of the world, the rise of Delhi and Mumbai is the most dramatic growth story. By 2025, the two urban agglomerations will have 54 million residents between them.

While Delhi did not even feature in the top 30 cities of the world in 1950, it is now the world’s second largest. Between 2000 and 2005, Delhi leapfrogged over Mumbai to become India’s largest urban agglomeration. Mumbai, which was the 17th largest city in 1950 will go from the world’s 4th to 3rd largest, overtaking Sao Paulo, over the next five years. The ‘UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs Population Divisions 2009 Revision of World Urbanization Prospects’ shows that just as the 75 years between 1950 and 2025 are a story of the growth of cities in the developing world, particularly in India, they are also the story of the decline of Western cities.

New York-Newark, the world’s biggest urban agglomeration in 1950, is now only the sixth largest and will drop to seventh by 2025. While the United States had eight of the world’s 30 largest cities in 1950, it now has three, Chicago and Los Angeles being the other two.

The trend is even more pronounced in western Europe. London, the world’s third biggest city in 1950 now does not feature in the top 30 list. Paris is the only western European city still in the list, a far cry from 1950 when nine cities of the UK and western Europe were among the top 30.

Tokyo, meanwhile, has consistently maintained its top positions.

2015, global positions

Please see graphic

Delhi and Mumbai, statistics: growth rate, 2015; The Times of India, Dec 24, 2016
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