Assessment of urban expansion: A case study of Columbus, Ohio

Student: Eric Davis
Mentor: Nathan Rowley (OWU Department of Geology-Geography)

Researching urban growth can show historical patterns and trends in regards to urban expansion, rates of in-filling, and economic development. This work seeks to quantify the growth of the Columbus Metropolitan Area over a multi-decadal period by using geospatial and demographic data to evaluate differences in urban growth patterns.

This work develops an ~30-year assessment, beginning in the mid-1980s to present, at five-year intervals to quantitatively and qualitatively compare expansion linked to development and economic growth. This work relies on remote sensing imagery acquired from the various Landsat missions Landsat-4 through Landsat-7 ETM) along with GIS census data, to allow for an unbiased assessment of trends in spatial distribution over time.

This comparative analysis shows a correlation between demographic and urban growth in various neighborhoods within the Columbus area. Various classes of infill development also vary based on demographics and location. By documenting these trends in infill development, it becomes possible to identify possible future priorities for individual communities, which would then directly influence patterns of urban growth.

More information about this project in Digital Commons @ OWU

Contact Info


Merrick Hall
65 S. Sandusky St.
Delaware, OH 43015
P 740-368-3880

David Markwardt, Associate Dean of the OWU Connection