Tropical Geography ›› 2022, Vol. 42 ›› Issue (5): 773-787.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.003484

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Spatial Evolution and Influencing Factors of the Manufacturing Industry on Metropolitan Areas: A Case Study of Changsha

Chen Luo(), Bohong Zheng(), Linlin Liu   

  1. School of Architecture and Art, Central South University, Changsha 410075, China
  • Received:2021-12-17 Revised:2022-01-27 Online:2022-05-26 Published:2022-05-26
  • Contact: Bohong Zheng;


Manufacturing is an important engine of China's economy, driving urban economic growth and spatial transformation. Therefore, the spatial evolution of manufacturing is a research hotspot for academics. This study takes the Changsha metropolitan area as an example, based on the micro-data on manufacturing enterprises from 1978 to 2020. Using the standard deviational ellipse, kernel density analysis method, and explored negative binomial regression model, the spatial evolution characteristics and influencing factors of the manufacturing industry in the Changsha metropolitan area from the point-and-surface perspective are explored. The main conclusions are as follows. From 1978 to 2020, the number of manufacturing enterprises in the Changsha metropolitan area show an overall increasing trend, with labor-intensive and capital-intensive manufacturing gradually upgrading to a technology-intensive form. In terms of spatial distribution, all manufacturing industries show an apparent movement of suburbanization in spatial distribution. Development zones are progressively becoming the primary spatial carrier for manufacturing reorganization and concentration. The manufacturing industry mainly expands along the "northwest-southeast" direction, showing a "point-axis" development pattern. In the process of spatial evolution, the Changsha manufacturing space has experienced a cyclical change from agglomeration to dispersion and then to accumulation. The evolution pattern has changed from mosaic filling to outward diffusion. Influenced by the characteristics of the industry, different types of manufacturing industries show apparent differences in spatial distribution. Labor-intensive enterprises are mostly micro-enterprises with flexible site layout, mainly contact diffusion and hierarchical diffusion, and the spatial characteristics of "central concentration and decentralized layout." The large-scale demand for land and employees in capital-intensive manufacturing industries-mainly large enterprises-restricts their concentration in urban centers. Meanwhile, preferential policies, such as "policy rent" in the development parks in peripheral suburbs, attract enterprises to move in, prompting capital-intensive manufacturing industries to show the spatial characteristics of "large-scale diffusion and small-scale concentration." Technology-intensive manufacturing industries are mostly small and medium-sized enterprises, which are attracted by national development zones and have strong vocational orientations. In the spatial evolution process of the manufacturing industry, factors such as socioeconomics, production cost, and governmental behavior have significant influence. Different factors play different roles in different industries. Labor-intensive enterprises are mainly affected by socioeconomics, production costs, and government behavior. Technology-intensive enterprises pay more attention to regional economic benefits, innovation environment, and policy support, while socio-economic factors, production cost, built-up environment, governmental actions, and innovation capacity all have important impacts on them. Capital-intensive enterprises are highlighted by the role of the population base, transportation accessibility, land cost, and industrial park policies. Capital-intensive enterprises are highly dependent on population, production cost, transportation accessibility, and the number of industrial zones. It can be found that the spatial evolution of all three types of manufacturing industries is significantly influenced by governmental actions; among which, the level of fixed asset investment and number of industrial parks reflect the planning guidance and policy orientation of Changsha's municipal government on manufacturing development. In addition, the degree of opening up to the outside world negatively affects the layout of all three types of manufacturing enterprises, indicating that the large influx of foreign capital tends to form industrial monopolies. This study provides a reference for optimizing the layout and high-quality development of urban manufacturing space.

Key words: manufacturing, spatial agglomeration, location choice, metropolitan area, Changsha

CLC Number: 

  • F427