Rise of a Megacity: Bangladesh’s Dhaka Sees Population Boom

BY Larisa Epatko  September 8, 2010 at 1:02 PM EDT

Nearly 500,000 migrants flow into Dhaka, Bangladesh, each year, leaving the countryside to try to make a living in the big city. By 2025, the United Nations estimates Dhaka will grow to about 20 million, rivaling Mexico City, Beijing and Shanghai.

The massive influx of people poses challenges of overcrowding, pollution, poverty and overtaxing services such as water and electricity, some analysts say. But this phenomenon is not unique to Dhaka. It’s happening in other urban centers around the world, where people are motivated by economic reasons or environmental ones, such as when monsoons wipe out their farms.

Erik German and Solana Pyne of GlobalPost are looking at the future of Dhaka in the first of a five-part series on the world’s “megacities.”

As part of their reporting on Dhaka, the series will probe:

You can watch the first report on Dhaka on Wednesday’s NewsHour. Here’s a preview: