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The objective of this study is to explore an approach of combining remote sensing and spatial metrics to characterize the urban growth of Hanoi (Vietnam), Nagoya (Japan), and Shanghai (China). Input data is twelve scenes of Landsat and ASTER data taken in Hanoi, Nagoya, and Shanghai city from 1975 to 2003. Firstly, this study developed a program based on a spatial metric of PLADJ to make urban growth maps. Secondly, FRAGSTATS was utilized to evaluate value of urban composition. The result showed that the urban core of Nagoya city spread out to suburb over times. At the end of 90's decade, urbanization of this city began slowdown. The characteristic of urbanization of Shanghai city was high urban density, and satellite towns around central city were established to absorb potential development to those satellite cities. In contrast to development of Nagoya and Shanghai city, Hanoi city showed the fragmented growth, and rapid expansion of new urban areas along newly constructed roads and highways. This trend led a negative impact to disorder the configuration of Hanoi city areas in unusual shape. The combined approach of remote sensing and spatial metrics is powerful, and will be useful to offer a future land-use plan for Hanoi city.