Monitoring the Urban Tree Cover for Urban Ecosystem Services - The Case of Leipzig, Germany
- Department Urban and Environmental Sociology, Working Group Geomatics, UFZ - Helmholtz – Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany
Keywords: Mapping Urban Tree Cover, Urban Ecosystem Functions, Urban Ecosystem Services (urban ESS), Digital Ortho Photos (DOP), Digital Surface Model (DSM), Object-based Image Analysis (OBIA), Inner Urban Differentiation
Abstract. Urban dynamics such as (extreme) growth and shrinkage bring about fundamental challenges for urban land use and related changes. In order to achieve a sustainable urban development, it is crucial to monitor urban green infrastructure at microscale level as it provides various urban ecosystem services in neighbourhoods, supporting quality of life and environmental health. We monitor urban trees by means of a multiple data set to get a detailed knowledge on its distribution and change over a decade for the entire city. We have digital orthophotos, a digital elevation model and a digital surface model. The refined knowledge on the absolute height above ground helps to differentiate tree tops. Grounded on an object-based image analysis scheme a detailed mapping of trees in an urbanized environment is processed. Results show high accuracy of tree detection and avoidance of misclassification due to shadows. The study area is the City of Leipzig, Germany. One of the leading German cities, it is home to contiguous community allotments that characterize the configuration of the city. Leipzig has one of the most well-preserved floodplain forests in Europe.