Human Settlements of early and medieval times got shaped around water, may it be in the form of a river or of an ocean. The former saw development of big settlements along with the development of rich culture and the latter acted as a facilitator to transport culturally produced items to other parts of the world by means of Oceans and Seas in the absence of Airways or any connecting mode of transportation. A boat is said to be in existence much earlier than 3000 BC when the Egyptians knew how to assemble wooden planks into a hull. There are numerous such examples which got developed as a means of connection between two culturally different regions/nations. For instance - three out of four India’s earliest metropolitan cities are on the Indian coastline and reasons behind it are quite obvious - the then East Indian Company governing on some parts of Indian boundaries like any other company was doing its business and their business was closely linked to those of the importers and exporters. Coastal Cities got their existence majorly to boost the trading activities and nearly every coastal city has the same story - a story of cultural exchanges in various forms. And henceforth these acted as a source of connection between different regions of human settlements which were otherwise not accessible by any other available means of transportation.
When planning for coastal cities, planners should keep in mind that there once was a coastal city of Muziris on the west coast of India which was in existence at least from 1st century BC till the devastating floods in River Periyar in the 14th century AD which for centuries acted as the doorway to India for its varied culture & natural gifts. Every city is at the mercy of nature for that matter but the role of human development planners is to maximise the glory in its entirety in the best possible manner and not just enhance its glory in terms of the number of high rise buildings a city has or by doing things like building the tallest buildings in different categories out of lack of understanding of concepts and ideas of real collective well-being.