Polycentric development and transport network in China's megaregions

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Song, Ge
French, Steven P.
Yang, Jiawen
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China’s mega-regions, in addition to cities and metropolitan areas, have become the engines for economic development, and the target areas for regional and national policies. Reflecting upon China’s current path of regional urbanization, the proposed research examines a fundamental issue for China’s megaregional development: the impact of transport network development on the spatial pattern of China’s megaregions. Using the multiple national Censuses (1982, 1990, 2000, 2010) and the transport network GIS data in the corresponding years, this research 1) constructs measures of megaregional spatial patterns, 2) assesses the spatial trajectory of megaregional growth based on the differentiated growth rates of metropolitan cities, 3) computes indicators of megaregional transport network connectivity and accessibility, 4) examines the impacts of transportation infrastructure on megaregional growth trajectory. This research helps understand the spatial structure of China’s megaregions with newly constructed quantitative measures of polycentric spatial development, as well as the intra-megaregion and inter-megaregion variation of transport network in China. It also clarifies the link between transport infrastructure and megaregional spatial structure in China’s unique context by providing quantitative evaluation of the implications of transport investment for the spatial pattern in Chinese megaregions. Finally it enriches the megaregional solutions to China’s vision of economic, social and environmental sustainability.
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