Present Status, Driving Forces and Pattern Optimization of Territory in Hubei Province, China
“National Territorial Planning (2016-2030)” was issued by the State Council of China in 2017. As an important initiative of putting it into effect, territorial planning at provincial level makes overall arrangement of territorial development, resources and environment protection, comprehensive renovation and security system construction. Hubei province, as the pivot of the “Rise of Central China” national strategy, is now confronted with great opportunities and challenges in territorial development, protection, and renovation. Territorial spatial pattern experiences long time evolution, influenced by multiple internal and external driving forces. It is not clear what are the main causes of its formation and what are effective ways of optimizing it. By analyzing land use data in 2016, this paper reveals present status of territory in Hubei. Combined with economic and social data and construction information, driving forces of territorial spatial pattern are then analyzed. Research demonstrates that the three types of territorial space aggregate distinctively. The four aspects of driving forces include natural background which sets the stage for main functions, population and economic factors which generate agglomeration effect, transportation infrastructure construction which leads to axial expansion and significant provincial strategies which encourage the established path. On this basis, targeted strategies for optimizing territory spatial pattern are then put forward. Hierarchical protection pattern should be established based on development intensity control as respect for nature. By optimizing the layout of population and industry and improving the transportation network, polycentric network-based development pattern could be established. These findings provide basis for Hubei Territorial Planning, and reference for future territorial planning in other provinces.