•Spatial clustering is applied to coordinates of the building stock in Germany.
•We determine the percolation distance at which a country spanning cluster emerges.
•The top five largest holes in that mesh are or were military training areas.
•The building density decreases with the clustering threshold following a power-law with an exponent close to 0.75.
•The overbuilding is a phenomenon that is beyond the dichotomy of sprawled and compact urban development.
Settlement percolation: A study of building connectivity and poles of inaccessibility
Martin Behnisch, Martin Schorcht, Steffen Kriewald, DiegoRybski
Landscape and Urban Planning
Volume 191, November 2019, 103631