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Urban Growth Dynamics in Perth, Western Australia: Using Applied Remote Sensing for Sustainable Future Planning

Geography and Environment Department, The University of Southampton, University Road, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
School of Agriculture and Environment, The University of Western Australia, Crawley WA 6009, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Andrew Millington, Harini Nagendra and Monika Kopecka
Received: 16 December 2016 / Revised: 16 January 2017 / Accepted: 18 January 2017 / Published: 24 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Land Systems: An Ecosystems Perspective)
Earth observation data can provide valuable assessments for monitoring the spatial extent of (un)sustainable urban growth of the world’s cities to better inform planning policy in reducing associated economic, social and environmental costs. Western Australia has witnessed rapid economic expansion since the turn of the century founded upon extensive natural resource extraction. Thus, Perth, the state capital of Western Australia, has encountered significant population and urban growth in response to the booming state economy. However, the recent economic slowdown resulted in the largest decrease in natural resource values that Western Australia has ever experienced. Here, we present multi-temporal urban expansion statistics from 1990 to 2015 for Perth, derived from Landsat imagery. Current urban estimates used for future development plans and progress monitoring of infill and density targets are based upon aggregated census data and metrics unrepresentative of actual land cover change, underestimating overall urban area. Earth observation provides a temporally consistent methodology, identifying areal urban area at higher spatial and temporal resolution than current estimates. Our results indicate that the spatial extent of the Perth Metropolitan Region has increased 45% between 1990 and 2015, over 320 km2. We highlight the applicability of earth observation data in accurately quantifying urban area for sustainable targeted planning practices. View Full-Text
Keywords: unsustainable development; urban expansion; remote sensing; Landsat unsustainable development; urban expansion; remote sensing; Landsat
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MacLachlan, A.; Biggs, E.; Roberts, G.; Boruff, B. Urban Growth Dynamics in Perth, Western Australia: Using Applied Remote Sensing for Sustainable Future Planning. Land 2017, 6, 9.

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