Land-Use Challenges to Implementing Transit-Oriented Development in China: Case Study of Jinan, Shandong Province

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

infrastructure - station, infrastructure - vehicle, land use - transit oriented development, land use - planning, land use - smart growth, ridership - growth, place - urban, mode - bus, mode - subway/metro, mode - subway/metro, mode - bus rapid transit, mode - pedestrian, mode - pedestrian


Urban transit, Urban planning, Urban growth, Transit oriented development, Town planning, Subway stations, Smart growth, Pedestrian vehicle interface, Pedestrian friendly communities, Pedestrian crossings, Metropolitan area planning, Land use planning, Jinan (China), Implementation, Cycling, Crosswalks, Community planning, City planning, Case studies, Bus rapid transit, Bicycling, Barriers to implementation


Several Chinese cities are interested in incorporating transit-oriented development (TOD) around their subway stations. Few cities, however, have considered incorporating TOD into their bus systems; fewer still have included China’s bike population. The midsize Chinese city of Jinan, capital of the northeastern province of Shandong, wants to incorporate both bus rapid transit (BRT) and TOD within its urban planning framework. Jinan is set to construct a 135-km BRT network and seeks to incorporate TOD initially at the neighborhood level and eventually in the entire city. As part of an ongoing project between the University of California Transportation Center and the Transportation Engineering Department of Shandong University, preliminary land use analysis was conducted on a proposed BRT corridor, Lishan Road, incorporating smart-growth principles as a framework for creating walkable neighborhoods. Current land-use challenges, both citywide and street specific, to making the Lishan Road BRT corridor a true transit-oriented development are presented. The main barriers identified are as follows: (a) Excessive auto-oriented land uses along the corridor result in pedestrian–bike, bike–vehicle, and pedestrian–vehicle conflicts, which will increase with the construction of the BRT stations; (b) the land-use pattern manifested in 1-km blocks results in excessive distances between pedestrian crossings at intersections; (c) with superblock land use patterns and a lack of secondary roads, accessibility is limited for all modes; and (d) parking is inconsistently enforced, and cars are allowed to park on sidewalks, creating unwalkable areas and encouraging driving. Policies and guidelines that help shift Jinan’s planning to more pedestrian-friendly designs are presented.