PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2019, Vol. 38 ›› Issue (7): 988-997.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2019.07.004

• Special Column: the Belt and Road Initiative • Previous Articles     Next Articles

High-speed rail impact on regional accessibility and its spatial effects:A case study of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok railway

Nanchen CHU1,2(), Pingyu ZHANG1,2,*(), He LI1,2   

  1. 1. Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, CAS, Changchun 130102, China
    2. College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2019-01-10 Revised:2019-03-22 Online:2019-07-28 Published:2019-07-28
  • Contact: Pingyu ZHANG;
  • Supported by:
    National Science and Technology Basic Project of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China, No. 2017FY101303-1;National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 41571152 and 41771179;Key Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, No. ZDRW-ZS-2017-4-3-4 and ZDBS-SSW-SQC.


Under the background of the Belt and Road and the economic corridor of China, Mongolia and Russia initiatives, this study examined the accessibility level and its spatial differentiation of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok railway in the southwest border area of the Far East Federal District in Russia. We first evaluated the accessibility level of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok railway. Then, change after the future operation of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok high-speed rail (HSR) was projected with two accessibility indicators—weighted average time and economic potential. Spatial differentiation of the accessibility change was presented using ArcGIS. Finally, the spatial differentiation of accessibility change was used to reveal the change and reshaping of spatial patterns in the southwestern border area of the Far East Federal District in Russia. The results are as follows: 1) The operation of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok HSR will greatly improve the accessibility level in the southwestern border area of the Far East Federal District in Russia. It will shorten the journey time to eight hours from Blagoveshchensk to Vladivostok. After the operation of the HSR, the increase rate of economic potential is significantly higher than the decrease rate of weighted average travel time. The weighted average travel time of the nodes along the HSR will decrease by about 68%, while the economic potential of the nodes along the HSR will increase by around 1009%. 2) Before and after the operation of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok HSR, accessibility strength of various federal subjects in the Russian Far East Federal District differs: the Primorsky Territory > the Khabarovsk Territory > the Jewish Autonomous Area > the Amur Region. However, accessibility improvement of the Primorsky Territory, the Khabarovsk Territory, and the Jewish Autonomous Area will be weaker than that of the Amur Region. Spatially, accessibility optimal element shows a decreasing trend from Vladivostok via Khabarovsk to Blagoveshchensk. Accessibility improvement of the nodes at the beginning and end of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok line is stronger than those in the middle of the line. 3) Affected by the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok HSR, the gradual change and reshaping of regional spatial patterns will become increasingly more complicated in the southwestern border area of the Far East Federal District in Russia. Spatial extension and competition of influencing areas will intensify in the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok HSR distribution field. Spatial polarization of the Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok HSR line will further enhance, and a new pattern of center-periphery spatial system will appear. The spatial pattern of four regional service centers (Vladivostok, Khabarovsk, Blagoveshchensk, and Birobidzhan) will evolve into the dual-core pattern of two regional service centers (Vladivostok and Khabarovsk). Spatial integration will occur among near-field cities. Regional coordinating effect will become obvious in Blagoveshchensk-Belogorsk, Khabarovsk-Birobidzhan, and Vladivostok-Artem.

Key words: accessibility, Blagoveshchensk-Vladivostok railway, spatial pattern, Far East Federal District in Russia