Analysing urban expansion and land use suitability for the city of Kahramanmaras, Turkey, and its surrounding region

Doygun H., ALPHAN H. , Gurun D. K.

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.145, pp.387-395, 2008 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 145
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10661-007-0047-y
  • Page Numbers: pp.387-395
  • Keywords: urban expansion, land use suitability, remote sensing, Geographical Information Systems (GIS), Kahramanmaras, URBANIZATION, EUROPE


This study aimed at quantifying changes in urban area of the city of Kahramanmaras (K.Maras) between 1948 and 2006, and analysing suitability of existing land use (LU) to the land potential. Urban change information was derived from two black-white monoscopic aerial photographs, and IKONOS and the QuickBird images acquired in 1948, 1985, 2000 and 2006, respectively. QuickBird image and soil map with 1:25,000 scale were used to analyze suitability of the current LU pattern to the land potential. The findings showed that the urban area of K.Maras has expanded approximately 13 times during the past six decades. According to current LU and the soil map, productive and moderately productive soils were largely (73.2%) allocated for agricultural activities, which means that there was a strong consistency between the agricultural LU type and the land capability. However, widespread agriculture on the non-productive soils, and urbanization on the fertile agricultural lands were assessed as unsuitable from sustainable LU viewpoint. Considering this phenomenon, it is possible to say that rapid urban expansion has a growing pressure on the fertile agricultural soils. Monitoring LU changes, particularly urbanization, and developing effective LU plans based on the land capability were determined as the most important approaches to encourage sustainable use of land.