This study attempted to analyze the factors affecting the escalation of informal settlements in Wolkite town. The study also explored the land use/land cover changes of the study area for the last 30 years, which is 1984-2014. Both primary and secondary data were used for the purpose of this study. Primary data sources includes questionnaire, interview and observation while secondary data sources were reports, researches, books and different year satellite images of the town. The collected data was analyzed through SPSS, ArcGIS 10.3 and ENVI 4.7 softwares. The empirical findings revealed that informal settlements have expanded alarmingly in the study area at the expense of the nearby agricultural fields and the effects are witnessed in the town causing disorganized infrastructures and spontaneous network of villages. Monthly income of respondents, previous residence, occupation and mode of accession of respondent’s current holding are found to be the factors determining the nature of settlement in the study area. Therefore, the municipality should revise its procedures and control the spontaneous expansion of settlements.
Key words: Informal settlement, land use change, participatory mapping, Wolkite town.
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