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A Comparison of Two Retail Spheres of Influence.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

( Chinese International School IGCSE Geography Coursework - A Comparison of Two Retail Spheres of Influence ( Alvin Wong 10GY Due Date: 22 June 2001 Introduction Sphere of influence refers to the area surrounding a town, within which the town has a major social and economic influence. Sphere of influence is always affected by the surrounding factors. Few of the most significant factors are the accessibility, the size and services of its neighbouring settlements and the level of competition from rival settlements. Central place theory is that there is an ideal shape for the sphere of influence, as the distances from the central place to all points on the boundary are equal. This theory suggests that there is a pattern in the number of towns, cities and villages (Central Places) and in the ways in which the central places provide goods and services for their surrounding area. All the factors mentioned above may alter the range of a Central Place. Range is the maximum distance people will travel to purchase a good or obtain a service offered by a Central Place. The sphere of influence of a high order retail shop and that of a low order retail shop will be totally different. The reason is that the targeted customers of a high order retail shop is different from those of a low order retail shop. High order retail shops sell goods which are purchased less frequently. Such shops need a large threshold population. They are usually located in the Central Business District (CBD). Their superior positioning grants them an immense flow of customers from the whole urban area. They are, for example, department stores, car centres and furniture shops. Low order retail shops sell goods which are bought frequently, usually they are required for daily needs. They are commonly located in residential areas. These shops usually target at the local community. Some good examples of low order retail shops are wet market, fast food shops or bakeries. ...read more.

Middle

B above illustrates the distribution of consumers' population of Wan Chai Market. In this radial graph, it shows that most customers that live within 1 kilometre walk to the market. There are only 2 customers that walk to buy goods within the range of 1 kilometre and 2 kilometres. For the distance over 2 kilometres, only one customer living in Wong Chuk Hang Road walks to the shop to buy goods. There are 12 customers that go to Wan Chai Market by private cars. 5 of them (41.6%) come from Happy Valley (Wong Ngai Chung Road, Tai Hang Road, Broadwood Road). 4 of them live within the Wan Chai District (Stubbs Road, Lockhat Road, Queen's Road East). Among the remaining three customers, two of them live in the Mid-Level (MacDonnell Road, Kennedy Road). The last one lives in Pok Fu Lam (Bisney Road) which is over 4 kilometres away down the Southeast end of Wan Chai Market. There are 6 customers that take a bus to Wan Chai Market. In the Southeast direction, there are 3 customers that travel to Wan Chai Market by bus. Two of them live around east end of Jardine's Lookout (Wilson Road and Village Road). In the Southwest direction, one customer from Ap Lei Chau travels to the Market by bus, too. For MTR and tram, there is one customer uses each of these modes of transport. The customer who takes MTR live in Tin Hau, whilst the customer who takes tram live in Causeway Road. There are no customers living over 3 kilometres in the Northeast direction. There is where the commercial area of Wan Chai (North of Hennessy Road) is located. As can be seen from on Map C on the right, the seafront area is where the Wan Chai Ferry Pier and the other public facilities like the Wan Chai Sports Ground are located. Because it is not a residential area, therefore no customers come from that direction. ...read more.

Conclusion

They usually visit Mark and Spencer's whenever it is on sale or on special occasions. Most of the interviewees hesitated on this question and I believe that the result of this question is biased and inaccurate. Another problem is that I doubt whether the sphere of influence of the high order and low order retail shops are dependent on the places of residence of the customers. I believe that the last location that the customers have visited is more crucial to the visit of the shop rather than the place of residence of the customers. For example, from one of the interviewees that I have interviewed, he lives in Yuen Long. Yuen Long is about 20 kilometres away from Central. I don't believe that Mark and Spencer's Central branch has such a strong sphere of influence. Moreover, there is another Mark and Spencer's branch in Kowloon. If the sphere of influence is merely depended on the place of residence of the customers, why doesn't this customer visit the Kowloon branch which is much closer and convenient to him? In this coursework, my interviewing skills and questionnaire formatting skills had improved. This helps the interviews to be carried out more fluently and successfully. There are not many errors occurred in this coursework's questionnaire. Also, I improved my mapping skills through this coursework exercise. I really appreciate myself for having this improvement in geographical skills. I hope I will do a better job in the third coursework. Appendix Acknowledgement 1. Geography - An Integrated Approach by David Waugh (Nelson) 2. The New Wider World by David Waugh (Nelson) 3. Letts' Study Guide - Revise GCSE Geography 4. Hong Kong Driving Guide published by Universal Publications, Ltd. 5. Official Website of Mass Transit Railway: http://www.mtr.com.hk 6. Official Website of Yellow Page Map, Hong Kong: http://www.ypmap.com.hk 7. Reference from Hong Kong Central Library Map Library Photos taken from Mark and Spencer's Photos taken from Wan Chai Market IGCSE Geography Coursework- A Comparison of Two Retail Spheres of Influence 1 ...read more.

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