Agricultural change in the urban-rural fringe: a test of the perimetropolitan bow wave model

TR Number
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Virginia Tech

The urban-rural fringe in the United States is constantly shifting outward from the center of the metropolis, and urban landuses are displacing agriculture. Geographer John Fraser Hart developed the Perimetropolitan Bow Wave model to examine the movement of agriculture in a fifty mile radius of New York City. He concluded that agricultural activities differ in their rates of movement through four identified zones around the urban center. This thesis presents case studies of the movement of agricultural activities around two cities of different size--Washington, D.C. and Richmond, Virginia--to examine the validity of the bow wave phenomenon. The findings of this research are that Hart's model is useful only partially when examining other cities and that individual size and characteristics of the urban area must also be considered when analyzing agricultural change.