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Urban Land Expansion and Structural Change in the Yangtze River Delta, China

Key Laboratory of Watershed Geographic Sciences, Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China
Department of Land Management, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310029, China
Department of Geography, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112-9155, USA
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Giuseppe Ioppolo
Sustainability 2015, 7(8), 10281-10307;
Received: 28 April 2015 / Revised: 12 July 2015 / Accepted: 28 July 2015 / Published: 31 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Land and Sustainable Development)
PDF [2336 KB, uploaded 31 July 2015]


Urban development in China has attracted considerable scholarly attention. However, more work is still needed to examine and understand the mechanisms of urban land expansion, especially within the context of globalization/marketization, decentralization and urbanization. This paper analyzes urban land expansion and structural changes in the Yangtze River Delta (YRD). We find that cities in the YRD are experiencing urban land expansion mainly characterized by the growth of residential and industrial land. The dominant characteristics of urban land expansion in cities have also varied within different development and administrative levels. Based on our conceptual framework, we have used multi-models to investigate the driving forces of urban land expansion and structural changes in the YRD. The results reveal that six influencing factors—foreign direct investment (FDI), labor, government competition, institution, population, and job-housing relations—facilitate land use change in the economic transition process. However, their impacts differ in cities in different geographical locations, as well as with different administrative levels. Finally, this paper discusses policies to promote sustainable urban land use in the YRD. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban land expansion; economic transition; urbanization; Yangtze River Delta (YRD); China urban land expansion; economic transition; urbanization; Yangtze River Delta (YRD); China

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Gao, J.; Wei, Y.D.; Chen, W.; Yenneti, K. Urban Land Expansion and Structural Change in the Yangtze River Delta, China. Sustainability 2015, 7, 10281-10307.

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