The drive was breezy; Ìbàdàn air happens to be receptive, warm, and alluring — the type that makes you want to keep going at an endless journey: you, the vehicle, and her ancient hills all making sure you have a smooth ride. It was on one of such journeys a billboard caught and sucked in my attention, a new mall has just been opened at the popular “Bódìjà”. Bódìjà of all places, a residence of opulence, calm and ease, imagine what amount of leisure and cotton-like ease, such a mall will bring to the residents.
Ìbàdàn boasts of some state of the art malls, located at the right locations, housing the required functional and recreational services that can be offered to the ever-increasing populace of this city of history and might.
But, what role does the presence of malls play, in the scheme of the urbanisation of a given location?
Commerce and industrialization, sits at the fore of economic expansion — this reality spurred the rapid construction of a state of the art malls, especially in first world countries; there’s no developed state, that doesn’t house some malls, that are easily accessible to the masses. Money is being spent every day, and most bulk goes into food; which is why most malls are homes to more eateries than other services — food is essential.
The revenue generated from this alone, coupled with other essential needs like clothes purchase and secondary needs e.g. recreation, are always in lump sums, imagine such inflow of money into an economy.
The emergence of Malls strings the presence of commercialisation on her heels. The presence of commercialisation, drives the sole existence of urbanisation. What urbanisation draws to society, is more investment into her environment, sometimes the investment will not centre on real estate, but other factions of the economy: banking/finance, agriculture, education, ICT, food/beverages, e.t.c.
The presence of investment places society on a global map for trade and business; attracting more investors looking to make grab a new market and more profit. A society that’s void of urbanisation, will be an economic abyss.
We cannot sideline the present reality of Ìbàdàn’s expansion in economic development, not just landmass. The population of the city is growing at a frightening degree, more people are trooping into the city — there will never be a population explosion where there is no urbanisation and commercialisation to sustain it.
Suffice to say that the city of Ìbàdàn is growing economically, and in a matter of a few years, it will be going toe to toe, with other economic and business capitals in the country.