Built environment, special economic zone, and housing prices in Shenzhen, China

Han Li, Peijun Chen, Richard Grant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Shenzhen's meteoric urban growth is unprecedented, and its housing prices position it among the world's top five most expensive cities. Commonly understood as a ‘miracle city,’ ‘instant city,’ and ‘model city’ orchestrated by the central state in modern experimental urban planning, the local context and the role of the SEZ are a neglected spatiality in housing studies focusing on Shenzhen. Drawing on open data (Lianjia.com), we examine Shenzhen's spatial patterns of residential apartment prices and their associated local attributes. Based on a hedonic model, our results affirm a dichotomous spatial structure shaped by the special economic zones' (SEZs') associated unbalanced distribution of both accessibility and public/private service amenities. Inside the original SEZ (INSEZ), cultural amenities, green space, shopping malls, and a central business district significantly affect housing prices. Outside the original SEZ (OUTSEZ), only proximity to metro stations positively affects housing prices. Urban redevelopment should concentrate more on collaborative redevelopment in urban villages and equity in private and public service provision to narrow the inequality between INSEZ and OUTSEZ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102429
JournalApplied Geography
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • Hedonic model
  • Housing prices
  • Shenzhen
  • Special economic zone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Forestry
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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