Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2016, Vol. 71 ›› Issue (2): 265-.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201602007

• Transport Geography • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Impact of high-speed rail on inter-city network based on the passenger train network in China, 2003-2013

Jingjuan JIAO1,2(), Jiao'e WANG1(), Fengjun JIN1, Han WANG1,2   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2015-05-15 Revised:2015-08-28 Online:2016-02-15 Published:2016-02-15
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41171107, No.41371143


The evolution of inter-city network influenced by globalization and information technology has become a hot topic in city and urban research. This study tries to explore the evolution of nodal hierarchy and communities in inter-city network based on passenger train network during the rapid development period of High-speed Railway (HSR) in China since 2003. Results indicate that: (1) the evolved HSR network in China enlarged the disparities of weighted degree centrality between regions, but decreased the disparities of that between communities, and led to an increasing concentrated city hierarchy with fewer cities having high centrality value, and a growing similarity between the city hierarchies measured by the passenger train network and by city attributes (such as population and GDP); (2) the city hierarchy measured by passenger train network followed a rank-size distribution in the national and regional levels, as well as in some communities. (3) Spatially, cities with higher hierarchy in passenger train network and larger improvement in weighted centrality indicator were mostly located in the eastern region or the areas with the distance to the nearest HSR stations below 50 km, developed economy and high population density; the cities in 2013 could be divided into 14 communities, including the communities with cities mainly located along Beijing-Shanghai, Beijing-Wuhan and Wuhan-Chengdu, Wuhan-Guangzhou, Beijing-Jiujiang, Hangzhou-Xiamen, Lanzhou-Urumqi trunk rail lines, and located in Northeast China, Shanxi Province, Inner Mongolia. (4) The evolution of communities was mostly influenced by the natural environment and administrative areas, especially by the development of HSR network.

Key words: passenger train network, centrality, community, inter-city network