2017 Volume 73 Issue 5 Pages I_407-I_419
Japan is now facing with the long-term decline in population. Depopulation also brings with scattered housing in urban area which sometimes lowers quality of life of the area. These effects must appear more clearly in small towns/villages and their local society as a whole. Japanese government implements policies such as ‘Settlement and Independence Area plan’ (Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications) and ‘Compact plus Network’ in National Spatial Planning (Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism) so as to secure a minimum variety of urban functions necessary for daily lives. Their basic idea is to maintain minimum population and its density of central area, by inviting urban residents from surrounding areas and by enhancing the connecting transport network with surrounding small local towns. This study clarifies the changes of urban population density and connections of surrounding towns by transport network in the last decade. Tottori City and its surrounding areas, constituting the greater Tottori urban area in the eastern Tottori prefecture in Japan, are focused as the case study.