Urban growth pattern in Tehran City: Sustainability or unsustainability

Document Type : Case Study


1 Department of Geography and Urban Planning, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Faculty of Geography, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran


 Nowadays, metropolises have become as the focal points of production and use of goods and services due to the encompassing a large number of population. This topic has caused their rapid growths and developments and made them face risks concerning the development methods. Without a careful identification and planning, metropolises will plunge into their adverse consequences in the fields of environment, natural resources, human health, and socioeconomic aspects of the urban spirit. Thus, monitoring of spatiotemporal patterns of urban development in conditions of sustainability is of critical importance for urban planning and sustainable growth, particularly in the growing nations. The primary aim of this research is to look into the spatiotemporal changes in the land cover patterns of Tehran metropolis and its environs within the past four decades by employing remote sensing techniques and assessment urban growth pattern in terms of sustainability indexes. To generate land cover maps, Landsat family satellite images were used. To assessment, urban growth pattern, urban service distribution and air pollution have been applied. The results obtained represented the greatest growth has taken place in the territories built, and barren soil. The spatial analysis of urban service shows significant concentration of urban services in the key portions of the metropolis and its significant relation with environmental variables. In other words, polarization of urban services at city center, have created numerous environmental problems. The termination of this work can aid policy makers and urban decision makers to understand the outcomes of this practice.


Bhatta, B., (2010). Analysis of urban growth and sprawl from remote sensing data. Adv. Geog. Info. Sci., Springer Publisher.
Barnsley, M.J.; Barr, S.L., (2000). Monitoring urban land use by earth observation. Surveys in Geophysics, 21(1): 269–289
Deng,J.S.; Wang, K.; Hong, Y.; Qi, J.G., (2009). Spatial-temporal dynamics and evolution of land use change and landscape pattern in response to rapid urbanization, J. Landscape. Urban. Plann. 94(3-4):187-198.
Ghamami, M., (2003).Tehran urban complex: selection of a strategic plan for physical development. Center for Urban and Architectural Studies in Iran, Tehran, 215.
Gehl, J., (2001). Life between building, the danish architectural press, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Ji, W.; Ma, J., (2006). Twibell, R.W. and Underhill, K. Characterizing urban sprawl using multistage remote sensing images and landscape metrics Computers, J. Environ. Urban. Syst., 30(1): 861–879
Kazemi Pour, Sh.; Hajian, A., (2011). Creation the first real metropolitan city of Tehran in Iran. J. Popul., 76(1): 22.
Kong, F. and Yin, H., (2012). Nakagoshi, N. and James, P., Simulating urban growth processes incorporating a potential model with spatial metrics, J. Ecol. Indic., 20: 82–91.
Luck, M.; Wu, J., (2002). A gradient analysis of urban landscape pattern: a case study from the Phoenix metropolitan region, Arizona, USA, J. Landscape. Ecology. 17(4): 327–339.
Mansourian, H., (2014). Explanation of urban growth patterns in Tehran metropolitan area, department of geography, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.
Seifolddini, F.; Mansourian, H., (2013). Spatial-temporal pattern of urban growth in Tehran megapole, J. Geogr. Geol., 6 (1): 70-80.
Seto, K.C.; Fragkias, M., (2005). Quantifying spatiotemporal patterns of urban land-use change in four cities of China with timer series landscape metrics, J. Landscape. Ecology. 20(1): 871–888.
Wu, J.G., (2008). Making the case for landscape ecology: an effective approach to urban sustainability. J. Landscape. Ecology., 27(1): 41–50.
Wu, J. G.; Jenerette, G. D.; Buyantuyev, A. and Redman, C. L., (2011). Quantifying spatiotemporal patterns of urbanization: The case of the two fastest growing metropolitan regions in the United States, J. Ecol. Complexity. 8 (1): 1–8.