Lesson 7: Environmental Issues - Land Use Planning and Design


Any large-scale development has long lasting economic, social, and ecological effects where it occurs.  Landscape Architects and Planners are trained to identify and weigh the many considerations and approaches of large scale landscape planning, and then provide valuable input through the entire development process—from providing informed judgments about the potential impacts of well-pad and pipeline placement to opinions as to the best means for eventual management and reclamation of well-pad sites. The inclusion of designers in the land planning and gas development dialogue will help rural areas and small communities manage their resources while preserving the healthy landscape, scenic character and lifestyle of these places for future generations.  Marcellus by Design is a Penn State University Department of Landscape Architecture studio initiative to enhance awareness of the roles that landscape planning and design can play in the context of Marcellus Shale natural gas development in the northern tier counties of Pennsylvania.  Our goal is to provide stakeholders with information and insights regarding design tools that can help citizens make informed decisions about their land, their livelihoods, and their future.  This lesson will explore these issues via a (add mechanism) using the marcellusbydesign.psu.edu/ website.

The main lesson topics include:

  • Land Use Planning
  • Promise and History
  • Design and Planning/Geodesign
  • Stories and Voices
  • Project and Envision
  • Serious Games

Learning Outcomes

This unit mostly describes how land use planning can work at a landscape scale involving complex decisions. By the end of the lesson you should be able to:

  • Describe a typical land use planning process
  • Define geodesign and a new approach to planning
  • Outline the history of landscape scale natural resource extraction in Pennsylvania
  • Show how different values influence physical landscape planning
  • Show how multiple values can overlap for positive results

Lesson Roadmap

Lesson Roadmap
To Read List reading assignments Location
To Do
  • Activity 1
  • Activity 2
  • Activity 3
  • Submission Location 1
  • Submission Location 2
  • Submission Location 3


If you have questions, or need further references you may contact Penn State hydrogeologist Dave Yoxtheimer, at the Earth & Environmental Systems Institute. His email address is day122@psu.edu.