Transportation, Activity Systems and Land Use
Urban activities such as retail or manufacturing have spatial locations
from which a land use pattern is derived and influenced by the existing urban form and spatial structure. This
form is strongly related to the types of activities that can roughly
be divided in three major classes:
These activity systems underline the importance of linkages between
land uses, which involve movements of people, freight and
information. The results of these linkages are land use patterns. Thus,
understanding the set of relationships an industrial district has with
its labor, suppliers and customers will provide an overview of the land
use patterns in an urban area, but also with other urban areas.
- Routine activities are occurring
regularly and are thus predictable. They involve journey to work
(residential to industrial / commercial / administrative) and shopping
(residential to retailing). The land use pattern generated is thus
stable and coherent. Generally, these activities are zonal and links
are from areas to areas.
- Institutional activities. Most institutions are located
at specific points and generally have links with individuals. This
activity system is linked to an urban environment where links are
occurring irregularly and according to the lifestyle (students,
sports, leisure, etc.) or special needs (health).
- Production activities involve a complex network
of relationships between firms, such as control, distribution, warehousing
and sub-contracting. This activity system can be linked to a specific
urban environment, but also to a region, nation, or even the world.
Some activities are strongly linked to the local urban area, while
others are far more linked to the global economy. The land use pattern
of an activity may thus be linked to an external (international)