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Assessing economic activities - an example from central business districts

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The Central Business District (CBD) is a dynamic part of the city that changes drastically over time, and responds to forces and demands for activities from within and from other countries. However, it is extremely difficult to quantify the various propositions put forward for measuring economic activities in the CBD due to the paucity of statistical data. Planning intervention thus becomes extremely difficult as other forces beyond the control or knowledge of the planner play crucial roles in determining what activities will locate in the CBD and where they will locate. This study, attempts to explore a view of how to measure and assess central business district economic activities for planning purposes. It follows a critical discussion of the nature of the CBD by pointing to empirical studies, including examples from the New York metropolitan region and the city of London. Moreover, it discusses indicators could be used to measure and assess economic activities in the CBD by highlighting planning purposes covering the entire issue.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Graduate Institute of Rural Planning, National Chung-Hsing University,

Publication date: June 1, 2009

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