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Article
Publication date: 21 May 2024

Ahmed Ali A. Shohan, Ahmed Bindajam, Mohammed Al-Shayeb and Hang Thi

This study aims to quantify and analyse the dynamics of land use and land cover (LULC) changes over three decades in the rapidly urbanizing city of Abha, Saudi Arabia, and to…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to quantify and analyse the dynamics of land use and land cover (LULC) changes over three decades in the rapidly urbanizing city of Abha, Saudi Arabia, and to assess urban growth using Morphological Spatial Pattern Analysis (MSPA).

Design/methodology/approach

Using the Support Vector Machine (SVM) classification in Google Earth Engine, changes in land use in Abha between 1990 and 2020 are accurately assessed. This method leverages cloud computing to enhance the efficiency and accuracy of big data analysis. Additionally, MSPA was employed in Google Colab to analyse urban growth patterns.

Findings

The study demonstrates significant expansion of urban areas in Abha, growing from 62.46 km² in 1990 to 271.45 km² in 2020, while aquatic habitats decreased from 1.36 km² to 0.52 km². MSPA revealed a notable increase in urban core areas from 41.66 km² in 2001 to 194.97 km² in 2021, showcasing the nuanced dynamics of urban sprawl and densification.

Originality/value

The novelty of this study lies in its integrated approach, combining LULC and MSPA analyses within a cloud computing framework to capture the dynamics of city and environment. The insights from this study are poised to influence policy and planning decisions, particularly in fostering sustainable urban environments that accommodate growth while preserving natural habitats. This approach is crucial for devising strategies that can adapt to and mitigate the environmental impacts of urban expansion.

Details

Frontiers in Engineering and Built Environment, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2634-2499

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