Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2015, Vol. 70 ›› Issue (8): 1187-1201.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201508001

• Orginal Article •     Next Articles

Research on administrative divisions based on functional areas analysis: A case of Shaoxing metropolitan area

Chaolin GU1(), Ying WANG2, Yuan SHAO3, Jiang GU4   

  1. 1. School of Architecture, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
    2. China Academy of Urban Planning and Design, Beijing 100044, China
    3. Southern California Association of Governments, USA
    4. Graduate School of Science, Tohoku University, Japan
  • Received:2014-12-23 Revised:2015-01-27 Online:2015-08-20 Published:2015-08-20
  • Supported by:
    Major Projects of National Social Science Foundation of China, No.14ZDA026;National Science and Technology Support Program, No.2014BAL04B01;Projects of National High-tech Research, No.2013AA122302


This paper established a research framework for administrative divisions based on functional areas analysis. Firstly, data related to natural conditions, history, socio-economy, transportation and information across Shaoxing are anchored to several small geographical units - blocks or small towns, which forms the basis to identify the interdependence between the units from different levels, and provides the proof of spatial flexibility for urban diversity. Subsequent analysis was concentrated on the division of functional areas through factor analysis and cluster analysis, which provides scientific foundation for the re-organization of the functional areas. On the basis of the research framework, with Shaoxing city as an example, the study indicates that the geographic, socio-economic, transportation and information connections between current administrative districts in Shaoxing have already broken through the limitation of administrative demarcation. Administrative divisions based on functional areas should be enhanced to further stimulate regional development. On the one hand, this approach ensures the accordance between administrative divisions and functional areas, which will facilitate the regional integration and socio-economic development; on the other hand, the administrative divisions dispel the shielding effect of segmentation between natural system and socio-economic system, which would exert positive influence for Shaoxing on promoting the development of surrounding areas. In all, this paper concludes that the administrative divisions based on the analysis of the function areas has exceptional importance and significance on the fast proceeding of physical environmental and socio-economic development.

Key words: functional area, spatial re-organization, administrative divisions, urban agglomerations, Shaoxing City