Time-Series Satellite Imagery Demonstrates the Progressive Failure of a City Master Plan to Control Urbanization in Abuja, Nigeria

Ibrahim A. Gumel, Paul Aplin, Christopher G. Marston, Jeremy Morley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Urbanization is a global phenomenon, but its negative effects are most pronounced in developing countries. While much urbanization in the global South is unplanned, there have been occasional attempts at strategic, large-scale urban planning. One example is Abuja, Nigeria, a new city with origins in a 1970s Master Plan. Here, we use multi-temporal remote sensing to investigate four decades of urbanization in Abuja, showing the extent to which urban development has matched original intentions. Seven Landsat images from 1975 to 2014 were selected to correspond with Master Plan milestones and turning points in Nigeria’s socio-political development. Land cover classification and change detection results show built-up land increasing rapidly, from 1,167 ha in 1975 to 18,623 ha in 2014, mostly converted from grassland, often via a pioneer bare soil class. Comparing image analysis against the Master Plan shows that, in the early years, Abuja’s development matched broad planning intentions fairly closely. Later, though, unplanned development proliferated, and the city’s resemblance to the Master Plan diminished progressively. Level of adherence to the Master Plan varied widely according to the system of government. Notably, after long-term military rule was replaced by a democratic government around the turn of the millennium, unplanned development increased sharply.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1112
Number of pages22
JournalRemote Sensing
Volume12
Issue number7
Early online date31 Mar 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2020

Keywords

  • urbanization
  • global south
  • land cover classification
  • change detection
  • master plan
  • unplanned development

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Time-Series Satellite Imagery Demonstrates the Progressive Failure of a City Master Plan to Control Urbanization in Abuja, Nigeria'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this