Multi-city sustainable regional urban growth simulation-MSRUGS: A case study along the mid-section of Silk Road of China

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Geography and Geology


Urban growth along the middle section of the ancient silk-road of China (so called West Yellow River Corridor-He-Xi Corridor) has taken a unique path deviating from what is commonly seen in the coastal China. Urban growth here has been driven by historical heritage, transportation connection between East and West China, and mineral exploitation. However, it has been constrained by water shortage and harsh natural environment because this region is located in arid and semi-arid climate zones. This paper attempts to construct a multi-city agent-based model to explore possible trajectories of regional urban growth along the entire He-Xi Corridor under a severe environment risk, over urban growth under an extreme threat of water shortage. In contrast with current ABM approaches, our model will simulate urban growth in a large administrative region consisting of a system of cities. It simultaneously considers the spatial variations of these cities in terms of population size, development history, water resource endowment and sustainable development potential. It also explores potential impacts of exogenous inter-city interactions on future urban growth on the basis of urban gravity model. The algorithmic foundations of three types of agents, developers, conservationists and regional-planners, are discussed. Simulations with regard to three different development scenarios are presented and analyzed.

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