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On the separability of urban land-use categories in fine spatial scale land-cover data using structural pattern recognition

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Stuart Barr


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It has been widely asserted that the morphology of urban areas is a result of the interactions of urban function and urban form. This has lead a number of studies to postulate, either explicitly or implicitly, that a mapping exists between the physical form (land cover) of the urban fabric and its corresponding function and activity (land use), although relatively little quantitative evidence has been presented to support this assertion. This paper presents the results of an investigation into the relationship between urban form and urban function using fine spatial scale digital map data. These are used to derive quantitative information on the morphological properties and spatial structure of the buildings present in a series of urban land-use categories identified in two urban areas (Cardiff and Orpington) in the UK. A statistical separability analysis of these land use samples suggests that a mapping exists between urban form and function, which, if replicated for other urban areas, would allow urban land use to be inferred from an analysis of the spatial disposition of land cover parcels, particularly buildings.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Barr SL, Barnsley MJ, Steel A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Environment and Planning B: Planning & Design

Year: 2004

Volume: 31

Issue: 3

Pages: 397-418

ISSN (print): 0265-8135

ISSN (electronic): 1472-3417


DOI: 10.1068/b3016


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