Characterising urban sprawl on a local scale with accessibility measures

Sohn, Jungyul, Songhyun Choi, Rebecca Lewis, and Gerrit Knaap

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Although measuring sprawl based on morphology is conceptually simple and easy to implement, it is of limited use for deriving implications for urban planning. However, measuring sprawl based on accessibility enables us to observe the impact of development and establish a customized place-based policy by examining the spatial variation within the region. This study aims to develop and operationalize accessibility-based sprawl indicators. For this purpose, it employs two accessibility based sprawl indicator categories and develops their measures: accessibilities to urban functions and open space. From the case study, the findings reveal that the accessibility-based sprawl index shows a clear difference from the morphology-based ones, suggesting that the judgment on sprawl may be wrong if it is purely based on morphology.