Yizhao Du: Transformation and revival: Research on urban development strategic planning for HanDan under the dual dilemma of resourcebased industry transition and regional spatial marginalization

Location: Han Dan, China
Mentors: Roberto Rocco, Alex Wandl
Keywords: Secondary cities, resource-based industrial cities, transformation, innovative urbanism, strategic planning, integration

Secondary post-industrial cities in China are facing two problems. In order to promote the sustainable transformation of cities, the Chinese central government promoted “new industrialization” in 2002. This concept aims to eliminate heavy industry enterprises to create a better urban environment. Due to the imbalance in the industrial structure and loss of talent and labour, these resource-based industrial cities are facing the dilemma of industrial upgrading. On the other hand, as regional cooperation is considered extremely important in the new stage of industrialization, the central government started to promote “urban agglomeration” as a key approach to such cooperation. However, due to the complex administrative system and the unequal competition between the central and other cities, the secondary cities cannot really benefit from regionalization and are gradually spatially marginalized. The two problems form a vicious circle, hindering the sustainable upgrade of these secondary resource-based industrial cities. This project aims to study how to use spatial planning and strategic interventions to help secondary (post-) resource-based industrial cities seek better sustainability and development. Onto achieve this, Handan, a secondary city with nearly 10 million population surrounded by four mega-regions, is selected as the research object. This city suffers from the development limitation of “in-between mega regions” and threat of hindrance of heavy industrial enterprises. Except for the disadvantages, it is a city with a long history and splendid culture which could provide great potential to develop into a new type innovative metropolis. In this project, three planning principles derived from theoretical study were put forward: young people friendly, local culture friendly, and natural environment friendly.


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