Role of Pre-existing Settlements in the Urban Expansion of Erbil

Author : Hamid Turki Haykal1
1Department of Architecture, College of Engineering, Salahaddin University, Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq

Abstract:   According to its approved master plan, Erbil city extends in multiple directions and overlaps with some pre-existing settlements. The role of each pre-existing settlement in urban expansion remains unknown. This study utilizes a gravitational model, which assumes the existence of forces of attraction between any two proximate urban settlements. This drawing force attracted a variety of land uses of pre-existing settlements around Erbil city. The variables of gravitational force in this study are initial population size and distance of each pre-existing settlement to the core of Erbil. The gravitational force represented by the magnitude of the urban expansion is measured by the continuously changing area covered by the urban land uses throughout a studied period from 2007–2016. Satellite images were used to depict the difference between the size of settlements before and after expansion. Computer programs were used to draw and measure urban expansion and determine its relationship to initial population size and distance to the core. This study finds that initial population size is a significant factor, but distance to the core has no correlation to the degree of urban expansion close to the studied settlements. The findings of this study will extend the knowledge about the urban expansion of Erbil and open door for further related studies.

Keywords: Pre-Existing Settlements, Erbil, Master Plan, Urban Expansion, Population Size, Distance to the Core

doi: 10.23918/eajse.v3i1sip177

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