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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Joys of Spread-city

  • Author(s): Webber, Melvin M.
  • et al.

Increasing ease of interaction and transaction across geographic space is reducing the constraints of distance and fostering social and economic integration across wider territories - globally and locally. Metropolitan areas are dispersing into their surrounding territories, creating the characteristic spread-city pattern. The worldwide incidence of ‘urban sprawl’ suggests that powerful forces are moulding it and that some highly valued outcomes are being generated as well. So long as groups and places are accessible to each other, and so long as metropolitan settlements satisfy valued operating criteria, the shape of a metropolitan settlement is of minor importance. Spread-cities are proving to be highly successful, and they seem to be the form of the future metropolis everywhere.

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