Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2017, Vol. 72 ›› Issue (4): 589-602.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201704003

• Urbanization Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Coupling mechanism and spatial-temporal pattern of residential differentiation from the perspective of housing prices:A case study of Nanjing

Weixuan SONG1,2(), Ning MAO3, Peiyang CHEN4(), Yaqi YUAN5, Yi WANG6   

  1. 1. Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology, CAS, Nanjing 210008, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Watershed Geographic Sciences, CAS, Nanjing 210008, China
    3. School of Geography, Beijing Normal University,Beijing 100875, China
    4. School of Architecture, Soochow University, Suzhou 215123, Jiangsu, China
    5. School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023, China
    6. Nanjing Academy of Urban Planning & Design, Nanjing 210005, China
  • Received:2016-06-06 Revised:2016-10-21 Online:2017-04-20 Published:2017-04-20
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41201161, No.41501168


Spatial differentiation of urban housing prices is the marketization expression of the non-equilibrium allocation of residential space resources, which reflects the contrast between social groups belonging to different social classes in selection preference and demand for housing. There is a certain degree of correlational coupling between urban housing prices' spatial differentiation and residential spatial differentiation with respect to the mechanism and the pattern. The paper chooses 1204 commercial housing communities in Nanjing's urban center as its research object and constructs a characteristic variable index system of housing prices. The GWR model is used to analyze major factors that lead to spatial differentiation in housing prices, as well as their combination relationship and spatial-temporal dynamics. Results demonstrate that: (1) there are various factors affecting housing prices, their subsequent spatial differentiation, and they are likely to evolve over time. The dominant factors are the level of the community, school district resources, quality of the landscape, access to leisure facilities, and so on. These may mainly reflect housing consumers' earning capacity, values, residential environment demands, life style and cultural tastes. (2) The pattern of housing prices in Nanjing generally shows the spatial pattern of "circle + fan-shaped + enclave". High priced housing mainly includes new apartments and gated communities in the inner city, communities in elite primary and secondary school districts, high-grade gated communities close to the Ming City Wall, housing in the center of Hexi New Town, and landscaped villas in the urban periphery. (3) Differing types and strata of housing communities attract and gather consumer groups with specific economic and social attributes, which makes housing price differentiation notable correlational coupling with residential differentiation in acting mechanisms and spatial patterns. As the degree of urban housing marketization is continuously deepening and the cultural characteristics and residential preference of social classes become increasingly mature, the spatial differentiation of urban housing prices is more than just an expression. It is also an important driving mechanism to promote residential spatial differentiation and re-differentiation, and can also predict basic trends pertaining to urban residential spatial differentiation in the future. Therefore, the spatial differentiation of urban housing prices can provide a prospective observational and analytical tool for the study of urban social space. It can further make up the time-lag defect which arises in traditional social space research using census data, as well as helps to predict and identify future trends regarding urban social spatial differentiation.

Key words: housing prices, residential differentiation, GWR model, gated community, Nanjing