Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia, has a small but fast-growing population with the increment from 920,000 people to 1.4 million between 2000 and 2010, approximately 4.4% growth rate. Nowadays, more than two million inhabitants have lived in the capital city for work, and study. The city is needed to be expanded to deal with some problems caused by the dramatic increase of people. Below you will be introduced to the expansion of Phnom Penh and its impacts.
Phnom Penh territory has been enlarged, from 9 to 12 districts by incorporated some areas of Kandal province to the capital. Infrastructure is developing every day; for example, four flyovers seen in the city. New satellite city, building construction, house building called Borey, and condo are grown incredibly in the last decades. Koh Pich city and Camko city are the great example of the urban development which contributes millions of dollar to the national budget and directly to labor workers. However, it is not as perfect as you have seen by your eyes. This development provides both positive and negative impact.
Take the first glance to the benefits Phnom Penh dwellers gain from the development. When city is expanded, the density of people can be distributing a bit more even; consequently, the congestion particularly road traffic problem will be solved. Moreover, it can take development to the local countryside or suburb area in term of business hub creation, rich social services, and modern infrastructure, so the gap between city and countryside might be reduced. Importantly, it will create more jobs for migration and local people like construction, technical work, and small family business.
Nevertheless, some drawbacks also come up along with the development. First, the development is unjust and bias. Poor people living in the city are forced to leave from urban area to the suburb with unacceptable compensation; for instance, some Boeug Kork residents left by getting small amount of money and relocate in the new area far from city with poor infrastructure and social service accessibility. Second, it also results in environmental degradation. For example, land expansion to the Mekong river of Koh Pic Island will interrupt the flow of water and affect fish migration. Boeung Tumpun, 2,600 hectares natural catchment, has been filled, so the city will lack off the natural sewage and rainwater reservoir, and natural purification system.
In short, Phnom Penh has been changing its face from the desolated city to the growing and crowded area with the rapid population rising. The development brings both pros and cons for the city dweller regarding welfare, and economy. The government, particularly, Phnom Penh municipality, should pay more attention to transparent benefits distributions.