Measuring urban sprawl: how can we deal with it?
Measuring urban sprawl is a controversial topic among scholars who investigate the urban landscape. This study attempts to measure sprawl from a landscape perspective. The measures and indices used are derived from various research disciplines, such as urban research, ecological research, and fractal geometry. The examination was based on an urban land-use survey performed in seventy-eight urban settlements in Israel over the course of fifteen years. Measures of sprawl were calculated at each settlement and were then weighted into one integrated sprawl index through factor analysis, thus enabling a description of sprawl rates and their dynamics over a time period of approximately two decades. The results reveal that urban sprawl is a multidimensional phenomenon that is best quantified by various measures.
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