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29 Jan 2011
School
Department
Course
Professor
Cliff Lau University of Toronto
GGR124 Lecture 2 (January 19, 2011)
Urban places can be defined using a variety of different criteria
Population minimum size of settlement or agglomeration; minimum
density; relying on population alone can be problematic
Economic base minimum proportion of the labour force in non-agricultural
occupations
Administrative using some legal or administrative criteria; but comparative
research is difficult; physical and social extent of the city can extend far
beyond the administrative responsibility (people could work in one area but
commute from a different area)
Functional reflect the real extent of the urban influence; census data
expressed in terms of functional definition; Census Metropolitan Area (CMA)
is bigger than the administrative area (Toronto includes Mississauga,
Markham, Vaughn, etc)
Understanding Urban Geography
Understand/interpret the distribution of towns and cities
Account for the differences and similarities between them and within them
Two key themes: spatial distribution of towns and cities (system of cities);
internal structure of the city (city as a system)
Discipline is eclectic
Approaches to Urban Geography
Environmentalism
1.Dominant up to the mid-20th century
2.Relationship between people and their environment
3.Site and situation studies physical characteristics determine
urban development
4.Urban morphology how urban areas have grown and changed over
time
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