Land Use Informatics
The goal of this focus area is to update and unify information on land use and land cover change at all relevant scales for the state, and to pursue specific analysis from such data that would improve decision making.
Definition: Land Use is how land is occupied or utilized, in categories such as residential, commercial, agricultural, industrial, etc.
Definition: Land Cover is the types of material or vegetation that characterize the surface of the land, in categories such as upland hardwood forest, lowland coniferous forest, etc.
Research and outreach will focus on the causes and consequences of land use change and the resulting patterns, as well as on policy recommendations that consider such factors as population changes, transportation, health, and the impacts of sprawl.
Michigan Aerial Imagery Project
Aerial imagery is essential for state and local land use planners responsible for managing wildlife habitat, land-based industries, man-made infrastructure, and the visual landscape.
In summer of 2005, aerial imagery for the entire state of Michigan was obtained during a flyover conducted through the National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP). In partnership with Michigan State University's RS&GIS Research and Outreach Services program, the Land Policy Institute (LPI) successfully brokered a $1.2 million deal that supported a collaboration of state and federal partners, including the Michigan Center for Geographic Information, the U.S. Farm Service Agency's National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP), Michigan State Police, and the Michigan Departments of Information Technology, Environmental Quality, Agriculture, Transportation, Labor and Economic Growth, and Natural Resources.
Spatial data from this flyover will be made available to communities across Michigan at the state's Center for Geographic Information (CGI) website.
High Priority Topics (Ongoing*)
LPI has given the highest priority to the following topics within the area of Land Use Informatics:
- State land use, land cover data, systematic/repeated land use cover update (develop permanent web-based map resources to citizens).*
- The science of sprawl: drivers of land consumption in Michigan.*
- Demand analysis: "What do people want and what are they willing to pay for?"*
- Forecast Michigan: An investigation at various scales of what Michigan's future landscape might look like under different scenarios and the cost and benefits associated with them.*
- Strategic plan for the collection, use, and availability of land use data-consistent and standardized throughout the state and with other states (considers user and stakeholder input).*
- Establish systematic funding for data collection and management.
- Carrying capacity for ecosystems, agricultural integrity, and infrastructure versus economic viability.
Land Use Informatics Initiatives
Projects funded by or spurred by LPI in the area of Land Use Informatics include:
- Methods for Land Use and Land Cover Mapping. Jessica Moy, RS&GIS, MSU.
- The Michigan Land Change Model Workshop: Building a Foundation for Modeling Land Change in Michigan. Patricia Machemer, Urban and Regional Planning, MSU.
- Exploring the Relationship of Recreation Participation on Residents' Perception of Quality of Life. Dwayne A. Baker, CARRS, MSU.
- Predicting Environmental Quality with GIS-Based Land Use Data: An Old Mission Peninsula Case Study. Jon Burley, Landscape Architecture, MSU.
- Scanner Acquisition to Facilitate Historic Aerial Photo Digitization. Robert Goodwin, RS&GIS, MSU.
- Wayne State University Faculty Land Use Database. Gary Sands, Geography and Urban Planning, WSU.
- Comparative Community Development in the U.S. and Romania. Roger Hamlin and Eric Strauss, School of Planning Design and Construction, MSU.
- Countywide Natural Features Inventory Project. Emily Gobright, Livingston Natural Features Coalition.
Select Community Impacts
- Working with the City of Lansing to endorse and sign a National Mayor's Climate Agreement.
- Supporting Jackson School District on a green development program.
- Providing data and information to fund Michigan Farmland Preservation Board activities.
- Providing ecological data and information to support Heart of the Lakes Center for Conservation.
- Providing information to Fair Housing Center in Grand Rapids on economic development and housing challenges.
- Supporting Lapeer City land use decision-makers with land use projections and analysis.