Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

USGS Graphically Illustrates Urban Growth In America

Date:
May 3, 2004
Source:
U.S. Geological Survey
Summary:
A new publication from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), "Urban Growth in American Cities," provides a measured, scientific view of urbanization in 16 metropolitan areas by describing spatial changes in landscape characteristics.

Farmlands, wetlands, forests and deserts that composed the American landscape in the early 20th century have frequently been transformed during the past 30 years into mushrooming metropolitan areas as urbanization spreads across the country. Many metropolitan areas in the United States are growing at extraordinary rates.

Related Articles


A new publication from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), "Urban Growth in American Cities," provides a measured, scientific view of urbanization in 16 metropolitan areas by describing spatial changes in landscape characteristics, the driving forces of urbanization and the potential consequences and challenges of continued growth. The 52-page booklet features contrasting image pairs from the early 1970's and 1990's that colorfully illustrate the extent of urban development in the selected metropolitan areas. Supporting data were derived from archived satellite images that are available through The National Map http://nationalmap.usgs.gov/. An accompanying overview of historical factors in American urban growth helps explain the transformation that these areas have undergone over two decades.

"Urban growth is a vital issue that requires our careful attention from local to global scales," said Barbara Ryan, USGS Associate Director for Geography. "It is not until we begin to take a broad census of the land itself - tracking landscapes from a spatial perspective in a time scale of decades - that we can grasp the scale of the changes that have already occurred and predict the impact of changes to come."

The 16 metropolitan areas included in the study were Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Las Vegas, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Orlando, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Raleigh-Durham, Reno-Sparks, Sacramento, Seattle-Tacoma and Tampa-St.Petersburg. On average, between 1973 and 1992, these metropolitan regions averaged 173 square miles of additional urban land over the two decades with Houston, Orlando and Atlanta as the top three regions by area. The growth leaders by percentage change were Las Vegas (193%), Orlando (157%), and Phoenix (103%).

USGS scientists continue to assess the status of the Nation's land surface and to analyze trends in land use. These assessments aid decision makers in considering such critical issues as ecology of urban environments, ecosystem health, water quality and quantity, resource availability and vulnerability to natural hazards. For further information on this topic, visit http://gam.usgs.gov/index.shtml.

Copies of "Urban Growth in American Cities" are available by calling 1-888-ASK-USGS and requesting USGS Circular 1252.

The USGS serves the nation by providing reliable scientific information to: describe and understand the Earth; minimize loss of life and property from natural disasters; manage water, biological, energy and mineral resources; and enhance and protect our quality of life.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by U.S. Geological Survey. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

U.S. Geological Survey. "USGS Graphically Illustrates Urban Growth In America." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 May 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/05/040503060634.htm>.
U.S. Geological Survey. (2004, May 3). USGS Graphically Illustrates Urban Growth In America. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/05/040503060634.htm
U.S. Geological Survey. "USGS Graphically Illustrates Urban Growth In America." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/05/040503060634.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Voice-Controlled GPS Helmet to Help Bikers

Voice-Controlled GPS Helmet to Help Bikers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 1, 2015) — Motorcyclists will no longer have to rely on maps or GPS systems, both of which require riders to take their eyes off the road, once a new Russian smart helmet goes on sale this summer. Jim Drury reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kashmir Mops Up After Heavy Flooding

Kashmir Mops Up After Heavy Flooding

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) — The clean-up operation is in full swing in Indian Kashmir after heavy rain triggered flooding around the mountainous region. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Calif. Gov. Issues Sweeping Water Restrictions

Calif. Gov. Issues Sweeping Water Restrictions

AP (Apr. 1, 2015) — California Gov. Jerry Brown announced a sweeping executive order Wednesday that imposes mandatory water restrictions across the state as California copes with a historic drought and water shortage. (April 1) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tracking This Warbler's 'Extraordinary' Transoceanic Flight

Tracking This Warbler's 'Extraordinary' Transoceanic Flight

Newsy (Apr. 1, 2015) — The blackpoll warbler makes one of the longest nonstop flights in the animal kingdom: three days straight for some 1,500 miles. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins