USGS - science for a changing world

The USGS Land Cover Institute (LCI)

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Urban Dynamics: Goals and Objectives

To conduct a study of land use change.

  • Determine trends, spatial patterns, and rates of land use change in the Nation's largest metropolitan regions.

  • Analyze land use change in large metropolitan areas using USGS derived temporal data.

  • Understand and convey the temporal dimensions and impacts of regional landscape change.

  • Document the types, timing, and extent of land use change and assess the impacts of land use change on environmental sustainability.

To provide an assessment of the impacts from human-induced landscape transformations.

  • Assess the impacts of landscape transformations on ecosystems and resources.

  • Provide USGS's unique data and expertise for assessments of environmental sustainability in dynamic regions.

  • Assess the impacts of land use change on environmental sustainability.

To provide data for better planning.

  • Provide land use planners, policy and decision makers, and earth scientists with the information on urban land use change needed to better plan for sustainable development.

  • Provide the geospatial data needed to make informed decisions in planning for sustainable development and Smart Growth.

  • Provide data to the user community for their use in future land use and land cover decisions.

  • Provide data for future applications in environmental assessment and remediation, watershed analysis and scientific modeling.

To demonstrate specific concepts.

  • Demonstrate the viability and necessity of a temporal land use and land cover mapping program for large metropolitan areas.

  • Demonstrate the ability to monitor urban landscape change on a regular time frame.

  • Demonstrate the utility of integrating existing historic maps, remotely sensed data, and related geographic information to dramatically convey how the progress of modern urbanization results in profound changes to the landscape.

  • Demonstrate that historic maps can be integrated with remotely sensed data and related geographic information to successfully map changing urban land characteristics for large metropolitan areas.

  • Demonstrate and encourage the digital archive and effective application of historic maps, remotely sensed data, geographic information systems, demographic records, and transportation models in the study of the major anthropogenic impacts since early settlement of major metropolitan areas.

To develop a temporal database.

  • Create a temporal database of land use and land cover.

  • Develop a historical GIS database of urban land use change for selected major metropolitan areas.

  • Provide users with a spatially referenced temporal database of human-induced land transformation factors for metropolitan areas.

  • Provide a geo-referenced temporal database consisting of urban, land use, transportation, hydrography, population data and imagery for a specific geographic region and timeframe.

To map urban growth.

  • The purpose of the Urban Dynamics initiative in FY98 is to map the urban growth of 4 major metropolitan areas and to use this information to model future growth.

To provide a greater understanding of urban growth.

  • Provide an understanding of the urban growth changes with a historical perspective.

To develop technology for geographic applications.

  • Enhance and apply technology for monitoring, analyzing, and predicting rates, patterns, and impacts of landscape changes resulting from natural and human causes.

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