Portugal has developed well-dimensioned local institutions with political autonomy, but with a range of attributes and resources insufficient vis-a-vis the necessary requirements for urban development policies. Portugal is the least urbanized of the member countries of the European Union according to current statistics, The estimated weight of the population resident in the metropolitan areas and in localities with more than 2,000 inhabitants is approximately 50-55 per cent. Meanwhile, 23 per cent of the population resides in parts of the country where urban centres barely exceed 2,000 inhabitants. After the three cities with 100,000 inhabitants, the following level involves population levels of from 40,000-50,000, which accounts for 13 cities; almost all of the remaining urban agglomerations have less than 23,000 inhabitants. The chapter argues that the main urban issues faced in Portugal should be differentiated according to the types of cities and agglomerations.