Urbanization is a landscape transformation process that is manifested by spatial expansion relative to human development. The present study aimed at the characterization of the spatio-temporal dynamics of Niamey city over the past 38 years (1975-2013) through a diachronic analysis of Lands at satellite images and application of landscape ecology principles. It sought to: (i) analyze the spatiotemporal pattern of land use land cover change of Niamey city and (ii) identify the driving forces for the land use land cover change in Niamey and their implications. Thirteen LULC classes were identified and grouped into three broad categories namely “Built-up area”, “Agricultural zone” and “Vegetation area”. The “Agricultural zone”, more specifically the class "Rain-fed farmland" represent the landscape matrix (over 37% of the landscape) throughout the period considered for the study. “Built-up area” dominated by “suburb quarter” experienced its lowest expansion rate during the interim period T2 (1989-1999).Analysis of the landscape spatial structure and configuration revealed that the landscape is fragmentation and highly heterogeneous. In general, urbanization in Niamey could be characterized by progressive densification and sprawl along communication lines.
Key words: Urban dynamics, landscape indices, remote sensing, Niamey, land use land cover.
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