“Asia’s rapid urbanisation is changing the very shape and nature of what we think of as a city. It’s not just the rapid increase in their numbers or their sheer size that makes these megacities fascinating. They look, feel and behave differently, too.”
The term megacity (a city with a population greater than 10 million) has been around for a while and there wasn’t much linguistic need to describe something bigger. Today, most megacities are more like Lagos and Mumbai, places of extreme wealth asymmetries than the global cities of New York City and London. Some are now using the term metacity to describe cities with populations of 20 million. Asian metacities are a good place to start thinking about the largest urban regions that are increasingly dominating economic, political and cultural affairs.