Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2017, Vol. 72 ›› Issue (10): 1859-1871.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201710010

• Rural Development • Previous Articles     Next Articles

An analysis of rural settlement patterns and their effect mechanisms based on road traffic accessibility of Guangdong

Ren YANG()   

  1. School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
  • Received:2016-04-20 Revised:2017-07-04 Online:2017-11-10 Published:2017-11-06
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41401190;Science and Technology Program of Guangzhou, China, No.201707010097


Based on classification data of remote sensing images, using kernel density, the minimal cumulative resistance model of road traffic accessibility, and a logistic regression model, the spatial pattern and the main factors influencing it were quantitatively examined in Guangdong Province from 1990 to 2013. The framework of the research concerning rural settlement evolution and its effect mechanisms were also discussed and generalized for the future. The results are as follows: (1) The spatial distribution of rural settlements showed some spatial orientation to low altitude and to low slope, and were significantly close to rivers and towns; thus formed a special pattern of "dense on the plains, and sparse in the mountainous region", including two high density core regions of rural settlements in the Chaoshan plain and the Zhanjiang tableland. The rural settlements were distributed along the rivers, valleys, and roads in the mountainous region surrounding the Pearl River Delta. (2) In addition to the spatial orientation of the open road, the accessibility of road traffic to the township has the greatest influence on the spatial distribution of the rural settlements. The connected transport network between towns and villages is significant for rural transformation as a comprehensive increase in township production and service capacity will be the key to optimizing the town-village system in rural areas. (3) Elevation and slope were two basic but influential factors that have affected the distribution, scale, and form of rural settlements. The attributes of the natural geography are the first elements in optimizing village layout and planning spatial reconstruction. (4) In the current Internet and social media era, the reconstruction of market network system orders is connected with the global market network system in the rural areas. The rural life service circle will be constructed with the township at its core to explore the theory and practice of spatial reconstruction, including its production, life and ecology, and social-cultural heritage and protection. It will also allow for exploration of the rural settlements' evolution, rural spatial production, rural social networks, group behavior, social autonomy, and social and cultural fields, which will be the core focus of China's rural spatial reconstruction research under the background of globalization.

Key words: rural settlements, spatial feature recognition, traffic accessibility, rural geography, Guangdong Province