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Assessment of Urban Spatial-Growth Patterns in China During Rapid Urbanization


  • Chengri Ding
  • Xingshuo Zhao


The enormous success of the Chinese economy has caused remarkable urban spatial expansion, resulting in new urban forms and reshaped city profiles. This article assesses emerging urban spatial forms that are prevalent and sizable enough to have a substantial impact on transportation, the environment, and urban sustainability. Special economic zones (SEZs), university towns, central business districts (CBDs), and mixed land development in terms of urban agglomeration, transportation, and land use externality are examined. It is concluded that efficient gains would be significant if SEZs are integrated with each other as well as with the city proper, university towns are developed to accommodate no more than a couple of colleges, and CBDs are concentrated with high-value activities. It is further concluded that mixed land use may not be an appropriate policy instrument to promote smart growth in Chinese cities because of the high degree of existing mixed land-use patterns.

Suggested Citation

  • Chengri Ding & Xingshuo Zhao, 2011. "Assessment of Urban Spatial-Growth Patterns in China During Rapid Urbanization," Chinese Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(1), pages 46-71, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:mes:chinec:v:44:y:2011:i:1:p:46-71

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    Cited by:

    1. Huan Li & Yehua Dennis Wei & Yuemin Ning, 2016. "Spatial and Temporal Evolution of Urban Systems in China during Rapid Urbanization," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(7), pages 1-17, July.
    2. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:6:p:1766-:d:149367 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Jinlong Gao & Yehua Dennis Wei & Wen Chen & Komali Yenneti, 2015. "Urban Land Expansion and Structural Change in the Yangtze River Delta, China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(8), pages 1-27, July.
    4. Contreras José Luis Benítez, 2013. "La Inmersión en la Economía del Conocimiento de las Ciudades Medias del Centro-Occidente de México 2000-2010," Journal of Intercultural Management, Sciendo, vol. 5(2), pages 73-89, June.

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