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Characteristics and Influencing Factors of Spatial Restructuring of Rural Settlements in Wuhan City
Pages: 180-189
Year: Issue:  10
Journal: Economic Geography

Keyword:  Rural Revitalization Strategyrural transformationrural habitatsurbanization and construction landspatial restructuringcentral plain areaWuhan;
Abstract: Rapid urbanization leads to transformation of rural villages. As the material form of rural life, rural habitats have also experienced sharp spatial restructuring. How to make the restructuring ordered is an important practical and academic issue. In the context of the insufficient attention to the evolutional dimension, meso-scale and the central plain area, taking Wuhan city as a case and using time-series data, the paper attempts to explore the characteristics of rural habitats restructuring and detect how the historical spatial forms of habitats, natural topography, roads and town system shape the characteristics and their changes. It has been found that the sharp restructuring of Wuhan’s rural habitats is mainly driven by both the urban expansion externally after the proposal of "rise of central China" and internal response of villages under the policy of "new-villages construction". Despite the little change of total land area of rural habitats, the spatial patterns of rural habitats have restructured sharply based on the historically built forms, changing from compactness to rapid fragmentation. The constraints over the spatial restructuring from the topography in terms of altitude and distribution of water bodies have been lightened with the improvement of infrastructure across all the villages. In contrast to remote towns and the towns with promising industries, the towns where the county governments locate have witnessed the much sharper restructuring of their rural habitats. It puts forward policy suggestions to promote the shrinkage of rural habitats.
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