China’s Pearl River Delta Overtakes Tokyo as World’s Largest Urban Area

The Pearl River Delta’s urban growth in 1973 and 2003. Image © Flicker CC user NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

’s Pearl River Delta has surpassed Tokyo in both size and population, making it the largest urban area in the world, according to the World Bank. The colossal megapolis – a conglomerate of several cities, including , Guangzhou, Foshan and Dongguan – is a central component to China’s manufacturing and trade industries.

It is now home to 42 million – more people than the countries of Canada, Argentina or Australia. And, considering nearly two-thirds of the East Asia region’s population (64%) is still “non-urban,” the area is expected to grow exponentially.

China as Architectural Testing Ground

Photo by low.lighting - http://www.flickr.com/photos/low-lighting/

The emergence of on the global economic stage has been discussed at nauseum in myriad publications. But this emergence has had an impact on the world of architecture, providing a testing ground where architects can experiment with new ideas about sustainability and urban growth. These new ideas have been realized in recently completed structures, and more are just beginning construction or have been proposed for the future. More on these new buildings after the break.