Beijing Mapping - An Almost Perfect Form of City Sitting Around History | The Plan
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Beijing Mapping - An Almost Perfect Form of City Sitting Around History

Beijing Mapping - An Almost Perfect Form of City Sitting Around History
By Andrea Boschetti, Federico Parolotto -

Following on from Singapore, CityPlan continues its exploration of the megalopolises of the Far East. This issue looks at the historic Chinese capital, Beijing.
As always, the GIS-based maps give a succinct overview of the essential features of the city under examination. The population map is the baseline against which to compare the other four, which look respectively at topography, the distribution of service provision, public transport density, and natural vegetation.
The standard area considered in all maps throughout the series (40 m high by 50 km wide) immediately flags up Beijing’s extraordinary size.
With approximately 21 millions inhabitants, Beijing is China’s second largest city after Shanghai. The population distribution map shows how most people are concentrated in residential areas between the second and fourth city ring. Similar to many large Western cities, Beijing’s inner-city area is sparsely populated.
Another sparsely populated area is the CBD (Central Business District), lying to the east between the second and fourth ring roads.
The transport grid comprises Beijing’s famous 5 ring roads – 4 in the outer areas, and one inner ring road – set against a tight network of local roads.
Beijing lies on essentially flat land. Unlike many other metropolises we have examined, services are regularly and evenly distributed throughout the territory, with no areas being particularly privileged. In contrast to many other cities, services are not mainly concentrated in central areas but are particularly evident in the densely inhabited districts.
The central core of Beijing is its legendary Forbidden City. Here, resident population density, services and public transport facilities are lower than in the outlying areas where the bulk of the population lives.
Finally, natural vegetation appears well distributed throughout. Parks are also adjacent to public transport and other...

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