external image Settlement_Hierarchy.jpg

The leisure hierarchy is similar to a settlement hierarchy as shown here above. It also depends on the population size and the number of people needed to support a leisure or sporting activity. Small settlements such as hamlets or villages only have enough THRESHOLD POPULATION for a few leisure or sporting facilities. For example, the village of Eijsden in southern Limburg has a swimming pool, tennis courts, a health center and a football pitch. A larger city such as Maastricht has these but also many other facilities and the largest city in the Netherlands such as Amsterdam even more. Amsterdam has a major sporting stadium, for example, for international events. It has a major international airport and major galleries, museums, and concert halls. It has enough threshold population and a large SPHERE OF INFLUENCE to attract people from all over the world. A tourist service or a leisure activity also has a certain range. The range is the maximum distance people are willing to travel in order to obtain a service. For example, a local baker has a limited range and the sphere of influence is small. A shopping mall has a wide range and therefore the sphere of influence is large. We can also look at certain tourist services or even a tourist town and discover its range. When discovering its range we can determine its catchment area; the area people are drawn from to reach that service or town.



How can the concept of distance-decay be applied to urban tourism?



How is distance-decay shown here?

Distance-decay is often shown with regard to land values and distance from the city center. This can also be applied to the tourist CBD. Land values peak in the city center and also along major routes and intersections. Land values then decline by varying amounts in different directions from the city center. Secondary peaks of high land value can occur along major traffic intersections or major traffic arteries. Land value and distance-decay also demonstrate how land use changes away from the city center. Since land values are less as you move away from the city center there will be more residential land use. You can also study this in a tourist town.