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Urban Landscape. Notes to Handouts (08-09 version). I. What is a settlement?. I. The ‘ what ’ and ‘ where ’ of settlements - site, location (situation), size, form, structure, morphology, function, quality of environment, households, people and interaction. II. Types of settlements.

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Urban landscape

Urban Landscape

Notes to Handouts (08-09 version)

I what is a settlement
I. What is a settlement?

  • I. The ‘what’ and ‘where’ of settlements

    - site, location (situation), size, form, structure, morphology, function, quality of environment, households, people and interaction

Urban landscape

II. Types of settlements

  • What is an urban settlement? How is it different from a rural settlement?

  • Functional definition of urban settlement

  • Statistical definition of urban settlement

  • - Why is it difficult to set a universal minimum size of an urban settlement?

  • Refer to ‘Urban Data 2008’

  • Refer to T.B. p.388-389, 392-397, 516-517

Comparing north south in the usa
Comparing north & south in the USA

Not all types of society will develop an urban structure. There was, for a long period, a marked contrast between the economies of the northern & southern regions of the young USA.

Urban landscape

II. Types of settlements

- Settlement patterns:

Causes of dispersion and nucleation:

T.B. p.397

Nearest neighbour analysis: T.B. p.402-404

Interaction / gravity models: T.B. p.410-411

Iii urban processes
III. Urban Processes

  • Urban growth

    - trends and distribution

    (refer to fact notes ‘Urban Data 2008’, T.B. p.418-419)

  • Urbanization

    - it is not simply a matter of an increasing % of people living in towns and cities

    - it is a multi-dimenstional process involving:

    physical, economic, social and demographic changes (refer to notes p. 3)

Urban landscape

III. Urban Processes

  • Urbanization

    - On demographic level, urbanization involves two processes:

  • natural increase

  • migration (with push and pull factors)

The average size of the world s 100 largest cities 1800 2000
The average size of the world’s 100 largest cities, 1800-2000

  • The growth of large urban areas (cities) has been especially notable over the last 50 years.

World mega cities
World mega-cities

  • The recent feature of urbanization: the emergence of mega-cities with populations of over 5 million.

Urban landscape

III. Urban Processes

  • Urbanization

    - The rate of natural increase in cities are often significantly higher than those in more rural areas. Why?

  • Higher fertility rate in urban areas due to a low age profile

  • Which is often the result of migration, esp. rural-urban migration (highly selective) – do ex.

Iii urban processes1
III. Urban Processes

  • What are the processes and features of urbanization? (notes p.3)

  • How did the % of the worlds’ urban population change with time? (notes p.3 & ‘Urban Data 2008)

Iii urban processes2
III. Urban Processes

  • The proportion of world population living in urban areas (notes p.4)

  • Proportion by different continents

No of cities with 1 million people 1800 2000
No. of cities with > 1 million people, 1800-2000

Source: Advanced Geography Edexcel (A), 2005, p. 461

Urban landscape

Distribution of the world’s100 largest cities, 1800-2000

Source: Advanced Geography Edexcel (A), 2005, p. 461

Urbanization in the developed countries
Urbanization in the developed countries

  • 1. The invention of agricultural machinery

  • 2. Improvement in transport

  • 3. Development of new manufacturing industries

  • 4. Attractiveness of urban life

Counter urbanization

  • It is a trend that involves the movement of people and enterprises out of urban areas to more rural areas.

  • The trend experienced by UK after 1950s:

    - 1. improved transport

    - 2. a decline in the heavy industries which had

    been concentrated in a few areas

    - 3. a greater development of services which

    favoured edge-of-city environments

Reurbanization since 1980s
Reurbanization since 1980s

  • the return of people to the cities is directional in nature

  • with majority of movement happens in the inner cities

  • which formerly suffer from dereliction and unemployment

  • the scale of return is large and impose an obvious effect within the city, both positive and negative

  • the return is particularly significant in large cities, especially global cities in MEDCs

  • where population has grown rapidly

Reurbanization in most medc cities in the 1990s
Reurbanization in most MEDC cities in the 1990s

  • the recognition of an urgent need to revive & redevelop flagging city / central city areas

  • a response to the changing world economy: globalization

  • effect of switching employment structure, from manufacturing industry to service industry

  • the derelict part of the cities, mainly the inner part, usu. captures the awareness of the government

Urban landscape

Reurbanization in most MEDC cities in the 1990s

  • major aims: to stop the loss of population & employment,

    improve housing stock and upgrade the city


  • ultimate goal: to attract the mobile, global investment

Case study in uk 1 birmingham
case study in UK (1) - Birmingham

  • the principal area of development:

    - the derelict areas in the NE part of the city

  • Heartlands initiative:

    - developing office space within the city

  • other city projects:

    - building an international convention centre,

    national indoor arena, etc.

  • aiming at the creation of a safe, profitable and

    pleasure environment

  • through ‘growth coalition’, several flagship schemes

    have been promoted.

Urban landscape

case study in UK (2) - Nottingham

  • revival of the past textile centre into an important centre for financial & business

  • pulling down small workshops to create more office space and space for houses

  • renovation of the historic Lace Market

  • redevelopment of the Borad Marsh and Trinity Square shopping areas, crating a further 77 000 sq. metre for retail space

  • further investment on key city centre sites

  • dev’t of national & international sports facilities– the National Ice Centre, the National Water Sports Centre & the Nottingham International Tennis Centre

Urbanization in the less developed countries
Urbanization in the less developed countries

  • in the stage of concurrent urban growth & urbanization

  • impacts under the withdrawal of the colonial administration

  • ‘over-urbanization’

  • ‘pseudo-urbanization’

  • other factors for the rapid process (notes p.6)

  • a case study of China (notes p.6)

Urban and rural population 1950 2030
Urban and rural population, 1950-2030

  • With projected values to 2030

Think about it
Think about it

  • What about the recent trend and prediction of China’s urbanization?

  • What are the driving force of rural-urban migration in China?

Urbanization in china
Urbanization in China

  • Total population at the end of 2006: 1.3 billion,

  • with 737 million (56%) and 577 million (44%) residing in the rural and urban areas respectively.

  • About 94% of population lives on approximately 46% of land.

  • Recent trend: the decreasing rural population and increasing urban population; moving industry and economic activities from the rural to urban areas as the main focus

  • The UN forecast: By 2015, China's rural and urban population will be about 50% vs 50%]

  • In the long term, China faces increasing urbanization: by 2035– the level of urbanization will reach 70%

    Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

3 driving forces for china s rural urban migration
3 driving forces for China’s rural-urban migration

  • 1. the widening income gap between rural & urban areas

  • 2. the increasing labour demand in centain economic sectors of the big cities

    e.g. construction, electronics & textiles, services

  • 3. the further agricultural modernization & therefore the agricultural labour surplus

    Source: http://www.iiasa.ac.at/Research/LUC/ChinaFood/argu/trends/trend_30.htm

Recommended reference
Recommended Reference:

  • Rural-urban Migration in China: Recent Trend and Future Challenges