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Land 2014, 3(3), 941-956;

Mapping Urban Transitions in the Greater Beirut Area Using Different Space Platforms

National Center for Remote Sensing, National Council for Scientific Research (CNRS), Riad al Soloh, 1107 2260 Beirut, Lebanon
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 May 2014 / Revised: 16 July 2014 / Accepted: 22 July 2014 / Published: 4 August 2014
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A particular challenge for undertaking urbanization mapping of Beirut is the absence of a unified understanding of the city. Migration, informal settlements, a lack of urban planning, political corruption, as well as internal conflict have made this task even harder. The population in Lebanon is unevenly distributed among regions, where one third of the population resides in the Greater Beirut Area (GBA), whereas it occupies only 233 km2 (2% of Lebanon’s total area). The Greater Beirut Area is subject to pressures arising from population growth and economic expansion. This study aims to follow the evolution of urbanization from 1963 till 2005 by processing and interpreting topographical maps and satellite images acquired by different space platforms. Satellite imagery change analysis shows that average annual urban growth surpassed 1.8 km2∙yr−1. Actually, a variety of factors triggers urban growth in the GBA (i.e., transportation, public policies, economic activities and environmental variables). The logistic regression method has been applied to model future urban growth in the region of Greater Beirut. Consequently, an urban growth scenario map has been generated. To validate our results, we compared an urban map derived from RapidEye satellite acquired in 2010 to our model’s outcome of the same year. The output shows a satisfactory rate of success (~61%). This research aims to provide policy makers and urban planners in Lebanon an essential decision tool to support upcoming urban planning in this study area or in others major cities in Lebanon. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban expansion; GIS; logistic regression; modeling; Greater Beirut Area urban expansion; GIS; logistic regression; modeling; Greater Beirut Area

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Faour, G.; Mhawej, M. Mapping Urban Transitions in the Greater Beirut Area Using Different Space Platforms. Land 2014, 3, 941-956.

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