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    Author(s): Patrick A. Miller; Peter M. Sforza
    Date: 2018
    Source: In: Gobster, Paul H.; Smardon, Richard C., eds. Visual resource stewardship conference proceedings: landscape and seascape management in a time of change. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-183. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 127-135.
    Publication Series: Paper (invited, offered, keynote)
    Station: Northern Research Station
    PDF: View PDF  (1.0 MB)

    Description

    This paper describes the development of a visual management tool that allows landscape architects and planners, government officials, and community members to view the visual characteristics of the landscape in three dimensional (3D) real time from their homes or offices. The tool uses Google Earth, a free and easy-to-learn software that could be used by citizens and public officials. The user can view various landscape overlays, including land cover, visual quality, and visual sensitivity, and assess the extent to which proposed development will fit the scenic characteristics of the existing landscape. This paper describes pilot testing of the tool on the shoreline of Claytor Lake in southwest Virginia. Key viewpoints are identified systematically. While the resolution of Google Earth is not very detailed, the application includes links from each viewpoint to an archive of higher resolution photographs of the shoreline. This archive can be used to record and document incremental change over time. It also contains links to visual design guidelines that can help make proposed development more compatible with the visual character of the landscape in each area. The tool is envisioned as a prototype that can be used by citizens and public officials to make decisions about development around the Lake.

    Publication Notes

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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Miller, Patrick A.; Sforza, Peter M. 2018. Real-Time Landscape Assessment: The Claytor Lake Visual Management Study. In: Gobster, Paul H.; Smardon, Richard C., eds. Visual resource stewardship conference proceedings: landscape and seascape management in a time of change. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-183. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 127-135.

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