Infrastructure is crucial for the development, functionality and prosperity of urban areas. It provides the foundation on which any city will thrive. Adequate infrastructure – improved water and sanitation, reliable and sufficient power supply, efficient transport networks and modern information and communication technologies (ICTs) – contributes to the sustainability and economic growth of urban areas, promotes the competitiveness of local businesses, improves labour productivity, enhances the investment climate in a city and contributes to its attractiveness. Physical infrastructure, such as roads, power and communication facilities, improves urban connectivity, which is essential to induce growth and reduce poverty. Cities that fail to provide adequate infrastructure are less likely to be prosperous and sustainable in terms of balancing socioeconomic development with environmental protection. 1 Mexico: aerial view of Guadalajara. https://s3-euw1-ap-pe-df-pch-content-public-p.s3.eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/9780203756171/1185235e-fc10-49ce-a494-f16c97054c2f/content/figu2_2_2_C.jpg" xmlns:xlink="https://www.w3.org/1999/xlink"/> © Jesus www.Cervantes/Shutterstock.com

Cities that have managed to attract investment and enhance competitiveness in a highly globalized economy are those that have vastly improved the range and quality of their infrastructure. Conversely, poor infrastructure is a major impediment to development, poverty reduction and improved standards of living.