Central Place System of Taihu Basin during the Ming and Qing Dynasties

  • College of Geographical Science, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210097, China

Received date: 2004-12-05

  Revised date: 2005-03-25

  Online published: 2005-07-25

Supported by

National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40131010; No.40371044


Taihu Basin is the core of the Yangtze Delta. Although it is a complicated hydrological network which has many brooks and lakes in this region, it has no effect on the formation of central place system. The flat terrain, regular farmlands encircled by water and developed market system are the immanent factors contributing to this formation process. Suzhou is the central city of the city hierarchy, and it is located in the geometric center of Taihu Basin. Meanwhile, there is high correspondence of distance between centers on different hierarchical levels. So, based on the development of the centers in Taihu Basin, the formation route of the central place system is put forward: the location of the highest centre is determined by the geometric centre of this region; the distance between the first-level center and the second-level center is determined by regional dimensions, as well as the distance between centers at the second level; subsequently, the remained centers will be generated synchronously after the distance of the advanced hierarchical levels is established. Therefore, a typical from-top-to-bottom formation process of the centers is shown in the central place system of the Taihu Basin. This process is universal. That is, most centres will experienced a changeable, upgraded process from basic to advanced, but the case for a whole region is different. A regional central place system begins with advanced centers, afterwards, centers of the rest levels come into being gradually. Finally, an integrated central place system will exist. Based on the above process, this study will extend and supplement the classical central place theory.

Cite this article

LU Yuqi, DONG Ping . Central Place System of Taihu Basin during the Ming and Qing Dynasties[J]. Acta Geographica Sinica, 2005 , 60(4) : 587 -596 . DOI: 10.11821/xb200504007


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