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Lima’s Slums: Problems or Solutions?

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Presentation on theme: "Lima’s Slums: Problems or Solutions?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Lima’s Slums: Problems or Solutions?
Professor Bill Chambers Liverpool Hope University President Geographical Association Annual Conference 30th March 2005 University of Derby

2 Lecture Structure Peru Migration Housing in Lima Growth of Lima
Progressive Development Employment Government Policies Hope or Despair?

3 1. Peru

4 Source:

5 Costa: The Atacama Desert

6 Peru and UK (World Bank 2004)

7 Atacama Desert (driest in the world)
Peru Three Zones Costa Atacama Desert (driest in the world) Sierra Andes (2nd highest mountains in world) Selva Amazon (largest tropical rainforest in world) Source: Coleccion Huascaran, Lima

8 Sierra: The Andes

9 Selva: The Amazon Basin

10 Peru: Population by Region

11 2. Migration

12 Primacy of Lima: ‘the head of a giant on the body of a dwarf’

13 Reasons for Primacy capital city (work, culture, civilisation)
largest port (Callao) traditional home of Vice-Roy in Colonial

14 Migration City centre v Paisanos 40% Costa 50% Andes
mainly central-southern Andes young/ambitious earthquakes rural poverty land tenure in Andes infant mortality guerrillas cocaine El Nino modernisation of coast

15 Source: Children in Peru, Peru Support Unit 1991



18 3. Housing in Lima

19 Callejon


21 Slums/turgurios and Squatter settlements
Housing for Lima Poor Slums/turgurios and Squatter settlements alleys & tenements (callejones) 64% workers’ housing 20% decaying mansions 11% city plots (corralones) % government projects private sector squatter settlements (barriadas)

22 Squatter Settlements Barriadas Urbanizaciones Populares
Urbanisationes Marginales Pueblos Jovenes Asentiamentos Humanos

23 Barriadas A residential community
formed by low income families in which the houses are constructed in large measure by the residents themselves and which are generally but not exclusively formed illegally. (Collins 1975)

24 4. Growth of Lima

25 Lima Population Growth
Year Population 1941 598000 1945 645000 1961 1972 1981 1990 2005

26 Source: J. Matos Mar 1977 Las Barriadas de Lima 1957

27 Source: J. Matos Mar 1977 Las Barriadas de Lima 1967

28 Source: J. Matos Mar 1977 Las Barriadas de Lima 1977


30 Centro cerro San Cristobal

31 my house Rio Rimac floodplain : Carmen de la Legua and San Martin de Porres 1965

32 Andes foothills Comas

33 my house Comas 1965

34 Southern Atacama desert: Tupac Amaru

35 Geographical distribution unoccupied, state or church or absentee landlord owned

36 The Invasion After several years residence
Pay to join invasion committee Planned by architects Holy Days, National Holidays, Public Holidays, weekends, government crisis Appeal to patriotism or religiosity of nation or landlords


38 5. Progressive Development
(Consolidation) (Positive Adaptation)

39 Progressive Development
The gradual development of housing community utilities employment. Depends on finance health motivation priorities government policy

40 Progressive Development of Homes
chosa (matting hut) peripheral wall internal walls concrete roof second floor more

41 chosas

42 Chosa, foundations and peripheral wall

43 Chosa, shop and peripheral wall

44 Chosa, peripheral wall from casa noble

45 cement bag Wood Water cylinder

46 Roofing: tiles, iron, electricity tubes

47 Roofing concreting

48 Casa noble Carmen de la Legua 1965

49 Progressive Development (after Turner 1967)
Year Homes Water Energy Education Shops Roads 1-2 chosa drums tankers kerosene private nursery market stalls bars dust 4-5 walls temporary roof stand pipe generator primary schools chemist cinema cafes compact 10-12 concrete roof 1st floor piped mains secondary stationersbakers garage surfaced lights 20-40 2,3, storeys subletting college university malls industry restaurant dual carriage

50 Moving from Carmen de la Legua to Comas
Carmen de la Legua 1965 view of my house

51 Carmen de la Legua 1982 view of my house

52 Carmen de la Legua 2003 view of home

53 Carmen de la Legua 1965

54 Carmen de la Legua 1982

55 Carmen de la Legua 2003 By 1974 its transformation into an urban barrio was almost complete – paved roads, uniform lotes, water and electrical services, urban style houses constructed with permanent materials, and a central plaza around which stood municipal buildings, a movie theatre, and a church all were established.’ (Lobo 1982 p 42)

56 Town Hall Carmen de la Legua 2003

57 Comas 1965 view left from front door

58 Comas 1982 view left from front door

59 Comas 2003 view left from front door

60 Comas Avenida Tupac Amaru 1965

61 Comas Avenida Tupac Amaru 1982

62 Comas Avenida Tupac Amaru 2003

63 Maria: Restaurante El Once 1965 and Salon de Belleza 1983 Comas

64 Comas private sector housing 2003


66 6. Employment

67 Ambulante selling tobacco, chewing gum, sweets

68 Open air office

69 domestica

70 Mobile furniture store




74 Julio and Helsomina (Susan Lobo 1982)
1969 Belt factory (J) Tailor (J) Kerosene Metal recycling Vegetables at market Wool balls Brick recycling Guinea pigs Chickens Chicha TV 1974 Belt factory Front of house store Beer Zappo Ducks Chicken Goats Sheep Wool Refrigerator Typewriter (daughter) Electric repair (son)

75 INCOME = Job + Overtime + Fringe benefits +
Part time jobs (cachuelas) + Reciprocity: exchange labour for goods + Reciprocity: exchange labour for labour Varied and flexible repertoire

76 Employment: informal & formal
housefront stores car cleaning domestics ambulantes bootblacks seamstresses artisans repair and creation Formal wages social security drivers Builders waiters clerks shop assistants factory workers

77 7. Government Policies

78 Government Policies Do nothing Eradicate: bulldoze, burn Contain: Law
Prevent: planning, municipal housing Facilitate: site & service, credit, technical, improve & incorporate Correct: remodel, relocate

79 8. Hope or Despair? Problem or Solution?

80 The Informal Approach Advantages Disadvantages Cheaper Slow
Non-monetary input Early escape from slums Added value to land Stimulated construction and service industries Disadvantages Slow Poor conditions Low quality Uneconomic use of space & resources

81 Lima’s barriadas Why so successful? (John Turner 2004)
When dwellers control the major decisions and are free to make use of their own contributions in the design, construction or management of their housing, both this process and the environment produced stimulate individual and social well-being.

82 Lima’s barriadas Why so successful? (Susan Lobo 1992)
Positive adaptation Build a community (material and spiritual) Accomplish goals View themselves and their future positively Through Kinship and paisanos Alliances and compadrazgo Control: migration & house construction Flexibility

83 References
Dietz, H Urban Poverty, Political Participation and the State: Lima University of Pittsburgh Press Gilbert, A The Latin American City. Latin America Bureau. Lloyd, P Slums of Hope? Pelican. Lloyd, P The ‘Young Towns’ of Lima. Cambridge University Press. Lobo, S A House of My Own. University of Arizona Press. Morrish, M Squatter Settlement in the Third World. Geography Longman. Smith, C.T Population and Development in Peru. John Murray.

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