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Denver has all the classic marks of substantial urban growth over the past few decades. Satellite images reveal expanding residential areas, industrial zones, and new freeways that loop around the metropolitan area. Also visible is one of the largest airport building projects in U.S. history.

False color imaging from Landsat that combines shortwave infrared and near-infrared bands shows growth of the city. Bright green is vegetation, so parks and golf courses are the brightest green; dark green is the forested areas in the Rocky Mountains; and the more mottled green shades are the residential areas of the city. Purple hues represent streets, highways, and other mostly unvegetated infrastructure.

Denver is experiencing post-1950 growth similar to other western cities like Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Dallas. The Denver metropolitan area expanded in urbanized land from 150 square miles in 1950 to 499 square miles in 2000, primarily onto prairie and agricultural lands.

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June 22, 1984, Landsat 5 (path/row 33/32) — Denver, CO, USA
June 15, 2022, Landsat 8 (path/row 33/32) — Denver, CO, USA

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References (Earthshot Overview/Parent Only)

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