Delineating urban areas using building density - GATE - Politiques publiques et espace Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Urban Economics Year : 2021

Delineating urban areas using building density


We develop a new dartboard methodology to delineate urban areas using detailed information about building location, which we implement using a map of all buildings in France. For each pixel, our approach compares actual building density after smoothing to counterfactual smoothed building density computed after randomly redistributing buildings. We define as urban any area with statistically significant excess building density. Within urban areas, extensions to our approach allow us to distinguish ‘core’ urban pixels and detect centres and subcentres. Finally, we develop novel one- and two-sided tests that provide a statistical basis to compare maps with different delineations, which we use to assess the robustness of our approach and to document large differences between our preferred delineation and the corresponding official one.
Fichier principal
Vignette du fichier
2021_debellefon_combes_duranton_gobillon_gorin_delineating_urban_areas_using_building_density.pdf (5.61 Mo) Télécharger le fichier
Origin Publisher files allowed on an open archive

Dates and versions

halshs-02492519 , version 1 (05-01-2022)



Marie-Pierre de Bellefon, Pierre-Philippe Combes, Gilles Duranton, Laurent Gobillon, Clément Gorin. Delineating urban areas using building density. Journal of Urban Economics, 2021, 125, ⟨10.1016/j.jue.2019.103226⟩. ⟨halshs-02492519⟩
273 View
437 Download



Gmail Mastodon Facebook X LinkedIn More