Author(s): Hathout S
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Abstract Most urban growth in Canada occurs in the urban-rural fringe. The increasing dispersal of the Canadian urban population is due to centrifugal forces pulling urbanites past the suburbs into the surrounding exurban communities. Most Canadian urban centres are located on prime agricultural land. Exurban sprawl devours an inordinate amount of the better agricultural land. The growth around the city of Winnipeg is a case in point. Within Winnipeg's urban field are the rural municipalities of East and West St Paul. The objective of this study is to investigate the impact of urban growth on the agricultural land of these RMs as well as the rate of urban growth in both Municipalities based on database analysis using aerial photographs taken in 1960 and 1989 and Geographic Information System (GIS). East St Paul was found to have a higher rate of urbanization (from 10.14\% to 43.75\%) between 1960 and 1989 than West St Paul (from 7.36\% to 23.57\%). The growth prediction using Markov probability chain analysis showed that East St Paul will henceforth experience a reduced rate of increase than West St Paul. The rate of urbanization for both RMs is found to be comparable with areas surrounding other major cities such as Toronto. The largest increases in urban land use categories occurred in and around the existing exurban settlements. It was found that most urbanization take place on the most fertile soil.
This article was published in J Environ Manage
and referenced in Journal of Remote Sensing & GIS