Monitoring urban growth around Rustenburg, South Africa, using SPOT 5

  • N Mudau
  • P Mhangara
  • M Gebreslasie


Understanding urban spatial growth is critical for sustainable urban infrastructure and service planning. Urban growth information is an important input into predicting future land cover and land use change and sustainable growth management. Rapid urbanization has resulted in expanded urban land use and has led to population explosions in urban areas and undesirable environmental impacts in South Africa. This research is aimed at studying urban spatial growth of Rustenburg city in South Africa from 2007 to 2012 using temporal imagery acquired by Satellite Pour l’Observation de la Terra (SPOT) 5 satellite. Multi-temporal images acquired in 2007, 2009 and 2012 were used to assess urban spatial growth of Rustenburg. Post-classification change detection method was used to quantify urban growth. For the purpose of this study, only two classes, urban and non-urban land use classes, were mapped and assessed. The urban spatial growth between 2007 and 2009 was 16.8% while 8.7% urban growth was observed between 2009 and 2012. The total spatial urban growth between 2007 and 2012 was 25.5%. This information can be used by the municipal authorities and decision makers as input during urban and environmental planning.

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eISSN: 2225-8531