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  1. Morphological (e.g. shape, size, and height) and function (e.g. working, living, and shopping) information of buildings is highly needed for urban planning and management as well as other applications such as city-scale building energy use modeling. Due to the limited availability of socio-economic geospatial data, it is more challenging to map building functions than building morphological information, especially over large areas. In this study, we proposed an integrated framework to map building functions in 50 U.S. cities by integrating multi-source web-based geospatial data. First, a web crawler was developed to extract Points of Interest (POIs) from, and a map crawler was developed to extract POIs and land use parcels from Google Maps. Second, an unsupervised machine learning algorithm named OneClassSVM was used to identify residential buildings based on landscape features derived from Microsoft building footprints. Third, the type ratio of POIs and the area ratio of land use parcels were used to identify six non-residential functions (i.e. hospital, hotel, school, shop, restaurant, and office). The accuracy assessment indicates that the proposed framework performed well, with an average overall accuracy of 94% and a kappa coefficient of 0.63. With the worldwide coverage of Google Maps and, the proposed framework is transferable to other cities over the world. The data products generated from this study are of great use for quantitative city-scale urban studies, such as building energy use modeling at the single building level over large areas. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 31, 2024
  2. null (Ed.)
    The information of building types is highly needed for urban planning and management, especially in high resolution building modeling in which buildings are the basic spatial unit. However, in many parts of the world, this information is still missing. In this paper, we proposed a framework to derive the information of building type using geospatial data, including point-of-interest (POI) data, building footprints, land use polygons, and roads, from Gaode and Baidu Maps. First, we used natural language processing (NLP)-based approaches (i.e., text similarity measurement and topic modeling) to automatically reclassify POI categories into which can be used to directly infer building types. Second, based on the relationship between building footprints and POIs, we identified building types using two indicators of type ratio and area ratio. The proposed framework was tested using over 440,000 building footprints in Beijing, China. Our NLP-based approaches and building type identification methods show overall accuracies of 89.0% and 78.2%, and kappa coefficient of 0.83 and 0.71, respectively. The proposed framework is transferrable to other China cities for deriving the information of building types from web mapping platforms. The data products generated from this study are of great use for quantitative urban studies at the building level. 
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