To present a new method for building boundary detection and extraction based on the active contour model, is the main objective of this research. Classical models of this type are associated with several shortcomings; they require extensive initialization, they are sensitive to noise, and adjustment issues often become problematic with complex images. In this research a new model of active contours has been proposed that is optimized for the automatic building extraction. This new active contourmodel, in comparison to the classical ones, can detect and extract the building boundaries more accurately, and is capable of avoiding detection of the boundaries of features in the neighborhood of buildings such as streets and trees. Finally, the detected building boundaries are generalized to obtain a regular shape for building boundaries. Tests with our proposedmodel demonstrate excellent accuracy in terms of building boundary extraction. However, due to the radiometric similarity between building roofs and the image background, our system fails to recognize a few buildings. 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.