Urban Sprawl Assessment in Eight Mid-sized Indian Cities Using RS and GIS

Vishal Chettry, Meenal Surawar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Detailed studies focusing on the spatio-temporal urban sprawl in mid-sized Indian cities are relatively rare. In this context, the paper attempts to investigate urban sprawl in eight mid-sized Indian cities from diverse physiographic regions. The selected cities are Lucknow, Patna from Indo-Gangetic Plains, Ranchi, Raipur from the peninsular plateau, Thiruvananthapuram, Bhubaneswar from coastal belts, and Srinagar, Dehradun from the northern mountainous region. Based on remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS), Landsat satellite images from 1991 to 2018 were classified into built-up and non-built-up land cover classes. After obtaining satisfactory accuracy results, land cover change detection was conducted. A multivariable integrated urban sprawl index (USI) was formulated by combining eleven significant variables related to urban sprawl patterns and typologies. The results revealed the rapid growth of built-up areas in all the cities, mainly toward the periphery. Despite the rapid growth of built-up areas, there was a decline in population density in most cities. The USI values ranged from 20.73 in Thiruvananthapuram Urban Agglomeration (UA) to 11.28 in Dehradun UA. The urban sprawl assessment revealed the prevalence of outward expansion, shape irregularity of built-up patches, and rapid dispersion. The urban sprawl typologies (UST), such as secondary urban core and urban fringe, exhibited an increasing trend in all the cities. The study emphasizes the use of modern research tools to gather scientific evidence on the urban sprawl in mid-sized cities. The obtained results will guide the concerned authorities to prepare strategies for promoting urban sustenance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2721-2740
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of the Indian Society of Remote Sensing
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 11-2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)


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