6 Urban master planning in China: a case study of policy and practice in Hua County
China has one of the earliest and longest traditions of urban planning of any country in the world (Guo, 2005). The capitals of Zhou Dynasty – West Zhou from the eleventh to the eighth century BC and East Zhou from the eighth to the third century BC – were built according to strict regulations and designs founded on an etiquette society and deeply rooted in ancient Chinese philosophy and social ethics. All the East Asian countries, including China, inherited these principles in the following two thousand years and developed various urban patterns with strong cultural similarity (see Steinhardt, 1999; Wu, 2013). These similarities can be seen in the cities of Japan, Korea and Vietnam.