TSUTSUMI, Jun 2002.
Land-use decisions and following land conversion process in a medium-sized city in Japan.

In Kim, I., Nam, Y. and Choi, J., eds.: Diversity of Urban Development and Urban Life. Seoul National University Press, 164-179.


This study provides a micro-level analysis of the relationship between land-use change and land-use decisions of agents in an urban land market. In this paper the land conversion process in Maebashi City, a medium-sized city with one core built-up area was investigated according to the stages of development in terms of land-use change, the number and kind of decision agents, and the mode of their own behavior. The Land Assessment Rolls housed in Maebashi City Hall were used to obtain land-ownership data. By using the rolls, it was possible to compile an array of information about land-ownership including the name and address of landowner, the lot size, in some cases, the date of sale or inheritance, and so forth. That is, the author could cover all the landowners in the example areas. The land-use data for the areas were mainly obtained by the author's field survey, while some parts were supplemented by aerial photos, topographic maps and residential atlases. To gather information on the decision-making processes, the author practiced so-called interview approach to the selected decision agents. Maebashi City had a population of approximately 280,000 in 1997. The city situates about 100 kilometers northwest of Tokyo (the outer suburb of Tokyo Metropolitan Area) and is the capital city of Gunma Prefecture. Raw silk trading has been the mainstay of the economy since the Meiji period (about 120 years ago).
In this paper, the author uses the phrase "decision agent" to denote decision-makers including landowners, land buyers, and intermediate actors who have a close relationship to the process of land-use change. The decision agent is responsible for an act of subjectivity. When we consider agents' decision-making processes from a synthetic viewpoint, for example, in the context of several constraints affecting their behavior, it is possible to analyze land-use synthetically.
In accordance with urban growth, the number of decision agents and the types of their behavior generally increased. Moreover, the most important feature was that when development progressed to the next stage, the particular agents who only chose limited behavior during the earlier stages took a combination of several kinds of behavior in the same area. The reason for the change of their behavior can be considered as follows:
1) The causes and conditions for their land-use decisions diversified due to the increase of the number of agents:
2) As a result of this diversification of decision-making, the choices for their behavior also diversified.
In consequence, the behavior pattern itself became more complicated. Multiple kinds of behavior taken by one agent was a phenomenon only observed in the city center with high urban land demand. However, when urban structure changed due to urban growth, characteristic behavior of the later stages of development was also seen in the suburbs which were previously at an earlier stage of development.


I Introduction

II Viewpoints
III Methods
IV Outline of the city
V Land conversion process in the rural-urban fringe area (Rokku Area)
1.Land-use change in the example area of rural-urban fringe
2.Land-ownership change in the example area of rural-urban fringe
3.Land-use decisions of agents
4.Land conversion process in the CBD
VI Who are the key agents in terms of urban development and of urban system?