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Tailoring a non-path-dependent model for environmental risk management and polycentric urban land-use planning.

Environ Monit Assess; 189(2): 91, 2017 Feb.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28144874
This study attempts to develop a non-path-dependent model for environmental risk management and polycentric urban land-use planning in Gorgan Township area, Iran. Applying three suitability layers of environmental risk (soil erosion, flood risk, fire risk, and land susceptibility), urbanization potential, and integrated surface (environmental risk plus urbanization potential layers), a non-path-dependent Cellular Automata-Markov Chain (CA-MC) model was configured to execute three scenarios of polycentric urban growth allocation. Specifically, the modeling approach improved the traditional functionality of the CA-MC model from a prediction algorithm into an innovative land allocation tool. Besides, due to its flexibility, the non-path-dependent model was able to explicitly include different characteristics of the landscape structure ranging from physical land attributes to landscape functions and processes (natural hazards). Accordingly, three polycentric urban growth allocation efforts were undertaken and compared in terms of connectivity and compactness of the resultant patterns and consumption of other land resources. Based on results, the polycentric allocation procedure based on integrated suitability layer produced a more manageable pattern of urban landscape, while the growth option based on environmental risk layer was more successful for protecting farmlands against excessive urbanization. This study suggests that polycentric urban land-use planning under the strategy of rural land development programs is an available option for designing an urban landscape with lower exposure to natural hazards and more economic benefits to rural residents. Finally, the non-path-dependent modeling is a recommended approach, when highly flexible and interactive decision-support systems as well as trend-breaking scenarios are desired.