Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, 24th ISUF 2017 - City and Territory in the Globalization Age

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From City-like Settlement to Industrial City: A Case of Urban Transformation in Huwei Township
Chih-Hung Chen, Chih-Yu Chen

Last modified: 14-05-2018


From City-like Settlement to Industrial City: A Case of Urban Transformation in Huwei Township.

Chih-Hung Chen¹, Chih-Yu Chen¹

¹ Department of Urban Planning, National Cheng Kung University

No.1, University Rd., East Dist., Tainan City 70101, Taiwan ROC

E-mail: chihhungchen@mail.ncku.edu.tw

Keywords (3-5): Industrial City, City-like Settlement, Morphological Process, Town-Plan Analysis, Sugar Refinery

Conference topics and scale: City transformations



City-like Settlement (German: Teilweise Stadtähnliche Siedlungen) (Schwarz, 1989; Sorre, 1952) plays an important role in the course of civilization, especially the development of industrial cities. Accordingly, this study utilizes Town-Plan Analysis (Conzen, 1960) to deconstruct the relationships between industrialization and settlement formation in order to illustrate the common origin of cities in Taiwan as a result of the emerging economy at the turn of the 20th century. The industrial city of Huwei, known as the “sugar city” with largest yields of cane sugar in Taiwan, had the largest-scale sugar refinery in pre-war East Asia (Williams, 1980). The city has grown and transformed with the factory during the four phases of morphological periods, which began at the establishment of the sugar refinery and worker housing in the middle of the fertile flooding plain in western Taiwan. The spatial arrangement was directed to operational and management efficiency, characterized by the simple grids and hierarchy of layout along the riverside. As the industry enlarged, the new urban core was planned to support the original settlement with shophouses accumulated in the small grids. Followed by postwar modernism (Schinz, 1989), the urban planning again extended the city boundary with larger and polygonal blocks. In the fourth phase, however, the sugar refinery downsized, leading to the conversion of the worker housing and the merging of the factory and the city that slowly brought to its present shape. The morphological process results in the concentric structure from the sugar refinery, providing valuable references for the preservation of the sugar industry townscape, and unveils the influence of industrialization as well as the special urban development pattern in Taiwan.


References (100 words)

Conzen, M. R. G. (1960) Alnwick, Northumberland: A Study in Town-Plan Analysis, 2nd edition (1969), (Institute of British Geographers, London).

Schinz, A. (1989) Cities in China (Gebrüder Borntraeger, Berlin and Stuugart).

Schwarz, G. (1959) Allgemeine Siedlungsgeographie (Walter de Gruyter, Berlin).

Sorre, M. (1952) Les Fondements de la géographie humaine (Reliure inconnue, Paris).

Williams, J. F. (1980) Sugar: the sweetener in Taiwan’s development. In Ronald, G. K. (ed.), China’s island frontier. Studies in the historical geography of Taiwan, pp. 219-251. (University of Hawaii Press and the Research Corporation of the University of Hawaii, Honolulu)

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