Timelapse: Urban Growth off Doha, Qatar

Here at SkyTruth we wanted to get on the Throw-Back-Thursday (#TBT) bandwagon, and thought what better way than with a global Timelapse!? This Google-powered tool allows us to see composite Landsat images of anywhere on earth from 1984 – 2012. This amazing time-machine helps us better understand growth, change, development or destruction.

Today we’re checking out the urban development around Doha, the capital of Qatar. What you can see in this 28 year span is some HUGE growth happening off the coast and out into the Persian Gulf. By default you’ll see it in “Fast” mode, but go ahead and click that button to slow down to “Medium” speed. You can also zoom in and check out those man-made islands that bloom off the coast.

If you check out the Timelapse homepage you may see similar landmasses appear off of Dubai. We’re beginning to think that plant-shaped islands are the hottest new building craze of the mid-2000’s. THOUGH if you zoom in close on Qatar you’ll see that one of the little “blooms” gets darker than the others right around 2010. It’s the only one so far with any development, but one of the furthest from that golf course that pops up in the desert)! It seems they’re rolling along with infrastructure investments and gearing up for World Cup 2022.

Zoom out and explore the world! The Timelapse project was launched by Google in 2013 as a global, interactive map that uses three decades of Landsat imagery to show our ever-changing world. Check out Time’s “Explore the World” option and do some skytruthing of your own!