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Article
A comparative analysis of the urban web of the greater Athens agglomeration for the last 20 years period on the basis of Landsat imagery
Fresenius Environmental Bulletin (2013)
  • Nektarios Chrysoulakis
  • Z. Mitraka
  • M. Stathopoulou
  • C. Cartalis
Abstract
Athens, like most of the world’s capital cities, is facing a continuous increase in both population and extent. Although the urban growth in Athens can be mostly attributed to the expansion of the residential areas, the total coverage by impervious surfaces in the city has been significantly increased during the last decade due to construction and new development projects that took place during the preparation period of the 2004 Olympic Games. In this study, a 20-year Landsat imagery archive (1988- 2007) was used to map the dynamics of urban growth in greater Athens area, based on the urbanization rates. The characterization and quantification of urban land-cover changes was performed by applying urban feature extraction techniques based on machine learning classifiers. Such classifiers use inductive learning algorithms to generate production rules from training data. For results validation, remote sensing data of higher spatial resolution than Landsat were used, i.e. Ikonosand ASTER (Advanced Specaborn Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer) images of the greater Athens agglomeration acquired between 2001 and 2007. The validation procedure involved a set of randomly selected points and overall accuracy of 94.8, 93.3 and 95.9 % for the years 2007, 2004 and 2001, respectively, was observed. Analysis of the results revealed continuing growth of urban features in the study area, particularly in the Messogia plain, where the new international airport of El. Venizelos is located, as well as in the western parts of greater Athens, across the Thriassion industrial area. Growth rate of urban areas was found to be variable in time, obtaining its maximum between 2000 and 2004, as expected. The overall increase of the urban areas during the 20-year period was estimated to be about 30%.
Keywords
  • Urban sprawl,
  • Urban Planning,
  • Earth Observation
Publication Date
July, 2013
Citation Information
Chrysoulakis, N., Mitraka, Z., Stathopoulou, M. and Cartalis, C., 2013. A comparative analysis of the urban web of the greater Athens agglomeration for the last 20 years period on the basis of Landsat imagery. Fresenius Environmental Bulletin, 22, 2139 - 2144.