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《Acta Geographica Sinica》 1984-04
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ON THE NECESSITY OiF THE URBAN DEVELOPING STRATEGY OF STAGES

Zhou Yi-xing (Geography Department, Peking University)  
It has great significance, both theoretically and practically, to study the law of urban development. The way of urban development that tally with the Chinese actual situation comes from the application of the common law of urban development to the special conditions in China. Urban development by stages is one of the important component parts of the law of urban development. It should be kept in mind both in national urban development strategy and in the developing plan for a region or a city. Urban development by stages can be seen at least in the following four aspects: 1. Urbanization is an unavoidable trend when human society develops into the stage of industrialized society, and China is no exception. 2. The three stages of the process of urbanization are the initial stage, the mid-dle acceleration stage and the terminal stage. China is in the initial stage now. The important thing is to make urbanization developing steadily, not to rush nor to make it standstill. 3. The development of urban hierarchy system is also by stages. The distribution of urban population in different levels within the urban, hierarchy varies as the system develops. In the process of urbanization, concentration of population in large and middle cities is usually followed by dispersing into smaller cities. The fact that China has more large and middle cities is caused by both inevitable factors and some artificial factors. Cities of different sizes have different functions which can not be replaced by cities not of the same sizes. Small cities and towns should be revived and developed, large and middle cities should also develop continually at the same time. This is the need of the economic development of China in the present stages and is also trained by the present economic conditions. 4. The problems faced by different regions and different cities with different developing stages are different from each other. Therefore, the urban developing poli-cies and plans should be made differently according to the local conditions. At the present stage of urban development in China, the good intentions are not always in accordance with our economic capability, and the core of the problems is lack of economic strength. To make our urban developing strategies we not only should keep the aim of future urban development in mind, but also should not be di-vorced from the present stage of urban development. In other words, we should not overleap the present, stage to do what should be done in future.
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