A Survey of Landscape Metrics and Land-use/land-cover Structures on Urban Heat Islands Surface: A Case Study on Urmia City, Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Remote Sensing and GIS, Faculty of Geography, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Arid and Mountainous Regions Reclamation, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran


Urbanization is developing unprecedentedly on a global scale. One of the chief repercussions of urbanization, caused by man-made alterations in land-use/land-cover (LULC), is the formation of urban heat islands. Albeit, differences among landscape structures and its accompanied effects on the environment are mostly neglected. Accordingly, the main objective of this study is to survey the various effects of LULC on urban heat island in terms of landscape metrics. For this purpose, Landsat-8 images and land-use maps extracted for the study region (Urmia) were employed. Landscape metrics were calculated from Landsat images with spatial resolution of 30 m for five varying scenarios (residential lands of five-floors and more, residential lands with less than five-floors, administrative-commercial lands, industrial lands, educational and health lands). The metrics were then investigated with respect to two types of land-cover (vegetation and impervious lands). Analysis results indicate that following industrial use, administrative-commercial use is the most significant factor contributing to the formation of heat islands. Results also stipulated the indirect relationship between vegetation and land surface temperature for all scenarios, with the exception of industrial use; in contrast impervious surfaces showed a direct relationship with earth temperature. Study results further determined the effectiveness of human factors in conjunction with LULC as amongst key factors influencing urban LST. Finally, the study specified how different effects of LULC on heat island of Urmia can be well defined with reference to landscape metrics.