• Definitions of Urban Geography
• Are all places individual? Or are they all similar?
• Commonalities and differences
• They all contain ‘space’, but the usage can differ
• Historical trajectory development:
• Suburbanization, gentrification, etc.
• Cities may exhibit common problems
• inadequate housing
• economic decline
• poor health (environmental and human)
• the provision of services
• Underbounding and Overbounding
• Underbound = built up area exceeds administrative area
• Overbound = administrative area exceeds built up area
• Space and Place
• Places are special sites where people live and work and form intimate
• Spaces: just a spot
• Levels of Analysis and Approaches to Study Urban Geography
• Neighborhood: area immediately around one home. Homogeneity in
housing type or ethnicity or culture
• City: centers of economic production and consumption, social networks
and cultural activities, governments. Distribution of power
• The region: spread of urban influences, conurbation, megalopolis,
• National system of cities: defined goals established that extend beyond
urban concerns, based on prime minister, president, national economy,
regardless of individual urban areas. Want to be more competitive, attract.
• World system of cities: interdependence of nations and cities within global
economy. Reframe urban questions that are not limited simply to cities or
nations. Link to the globe.
• Global Triggers For Urban Change
• Economy, technology, demography, social, culture, politics, environment
• Processes of Urban Change
• Urbanization: certain settlements grow at cost of surrounding countryside
• Suburbanization: urban ring grows at the cost of the core (built up city)
• Counter urbanization: population loss in urban core exceeds gain of the
ring, overall population loss
• Re-urbanization: rate of population loss tapers off or core regains.
• Globalization as a Complicating Factor
• Can create cities in the same mindset
• Economic globalization: TNCs, creating markets in other countries
• Political globalization: multinational political groups like UN governing
• Cultural globalization: same tastes and values, McDonalds.
• Sometimes places resist as well. Landscape changes. • Preconditions For Urban Growth
• Population, environment, technology, social organization
• Size/density, specialization of labor, surplus, class-structured society, state
• Public works, long distance trade, standardized artwork, writing, math
• Population: certain population size needed to create growth
• Environment: topography, conditions needed for urban growth
• Technology: development of skills and technology needed for urban
• Social organization: need to organize population through political,
economic, social, bureaucratic, social stratification
• Global Urban Patterns
• Urbanization: proportion
• Urban growth: total population in towns and cities
• Urbanism: extension of social behavioral characteristics
• Causes of Urban Growth
• Growth of urban population
• Net immigration
• Urbanization is Contemporary
• More than 10 million
• More than 20 million: Tokyo
• Global Cities
• Discorporate amount of economic activity, Tokyo, London New York
• Types of Urban Regions
• City-region: employment
• Conurbation: coalescence of once spate urban settlements
• Urban field: hinterland of 300,000 outer limit of 2 hours driving. Core
urban area and hinterland
• Built up area of separate urban settlements.
• Gottman, urbanized areas of north east seaboard, 40 million. Urban unit of
25 million, transnational areas. Polynuclear form. Cohesiveness. Zones.
Urbanized corridor, sector.
• Military need developed avenue and troop mobility for understanding
• megalopolis • Canada-US Metropolitan Comparisons
• Both baby boom, both have an increased immigration
• US population increased by 11.8%, Canada population increased by
• Canada has no metropolitan areas where both city core and suburbs are
declining, 39 cities in US are declining
• Canada much more concentrated compared to the US. Toronto,
Vancouver, Montreal. Concentrated.
• US has much higher levels of suburbanization. 1.5:1 vs Canada 1.3:1
• Much more compact.
• Much more fragmented, some regions have tax in US, Canada is uniform.
• More compact cities in canda, strong cores, high levels of investment in
housing, consistent education standrads
• But more US style subrubraundazation and car depdence. Decentralizaiotn
• Central Place Theory
• Christaller, 1933. Through Competition for space, optimal settlement
patterns will emerge. Settlements should be thought of as systems of
cities, settlements are clusters, increased success. Allow for goods and
services where there are low and high ordered. Population it serves, if
population is spread out, the settlements will also be spread ut.
• Abstract flat place, evenly distributed population, shortest distance for any
given service. Suppliers exist to maximize profits, seek largest possible
markets. Transpiration costs are equal. High order can provide functions
not offered by low ordered. Consumers have same income and demand for
services. Lower limit: threshold population, upper limit: range of good or
maximum distance people will travel for services.
• Central place theory
• Mercantile Model
• Vance, central place theory is special case that ignores wholesale sector
• Harvesting of natural resources
• Emergence of farm based staple production
• Establishment of interior depot centers, further development of settlement
inland, development of domestic and export manufa