Burd Run Land Use -Mapping and Narrative Assignment

See the finished project

During the Spring Semester 2000, the assigned mapping teams will complete a land use map for a section of the Burd Run Watershed. Each working team will be assigned two parcels of the Burd Run Watershed to be mapped in the format indicated on the attached model land use key. The model land use key was developed in consultation with Phil Tarquino, Director of Planning for Franklin County.

After the land use parcels are mapped by each working team, the land use information will be transferred by graduate assistants Ian Kramer and Vy Trinh into a GIS database. Most of your land use mapping of the assigned parcels will be done by field observations, but township and borough land use maps, aerial photographs, and digital land use information (provided by Ian Kramer) can be used to complete parcel land use maps.

After completing the land use mapping of your assigned parcels, each class member must write a five-page paper reviewing the importance of land use and the public interest, urban-rural ecosystems, environmental unity, and environmental feedback loops in your assigned land use parcels and the entire drainage basin as a regional sub-system or ecosystem. The mapping portion of your assignment will be a team grade (50 points), but your written five-page paper (50 points) will be an individual assignment.

In your mapping assignment, observe and note wetlands, environmentally sensitive areas, junkyards, illegal dump sites, and environmental hazards. You can check at municipal offices for land use maps and feel free to interview elected officials or others concerning land use patterns in your assigned parcels. Give your best effort to map the land use in each assigned parcel. I must caution you that segments of this assignment are not going to be easy. But, you realize no one gets something good for nothing. The main objective of this assignment is for you to have some fun, feel challenged, and learn more about Burd Run Watershed and land use implications of drainage nets, land use, stream flow, and flood hazards (Read Marsh Chapters 9 and 10).

Your written five-page paper should address some of the following issues on your assigned plots and the Burd Run Drainage Basin:

1) The importance of land use and the public interest, urban-rural ecosystems, environmental unity, and
environmental feedback loops.

2) Local governments must take the lead role in servicing good land use. Initiatives in land use planning and growth management need to be anchored in a community-based process that develops a vision for the future.

3) New tools can help meet the new challenges of land use. Land use disputes should be solved through negotiation or mediation rather than through confrontation and litigation. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and other advances in technology also offer new opportunities for improving land use decision-making.

4) How important is the environmental land use planning of the Burd Run Watershed to the quality of life to citizens of the Shippensburg Area and the Chesapeake Bay region?

5) Is development concentrated in suitable areas and are environmentally sensitive areas protected in the watershed?

6) Are wetlands properly identified and protected in the watershed?

7) How is open space used and/or protected in the watershed?

8) Is a strong land conservation program part of the Burd Run Municipal Planning program?

9) Do local governments cooperate to protect the environmental quality of the watershed?

10) How does the watershed land planning program impact hydrologic flux and storage, spatial distribution of organisms and cleansing of water and air?

11) What environmental planning initiatives would you incorporate into the future planning program of the Burd Run Watershed?

During class on January 24, 2000, mapping teams will be selected and team mapping regions will be selected. The numbers selected in the watershed from 1 to 26 will be your team mapping and study regions. The attached map of the Burd Run Watershed can be compared with your individual study area. In class, you will be given individual tax parcel maps where you can perform your detailed land use mapping on each assigned plot. The general map showing the exact locations of the 26 to 28 plots being mapped by all class members will be posted in Shearer Hall basement hallway.

Oral Reports:March 1, 2000 - Two-minute oral presentations reviewing key environmental land use planning issues on each plot.

Written Reports Due:March 15, 2000 - Completed land use maps and papers must be turned in on
March 15, 2000. In your written narrative, describe the land use patterns in your
assigned plots and the general land use patterns in the watershed. In addition,
address the questions noted in the assignment.

In class on January 24, 2000:

1. Assigned mapping teams and assigned land use plots
2. Assigned graduate student advisors
3. Attached Watershed Map and Land Use Mapping Key
4. Distribution of Tax Parcel Maps

TOTAL POINTS:100 points (50 points for land use map and oral report, and 50 points for written paper-
double-spaced, 10 point).


Model Land Use Key for Burd Run Watershed

High Intensity Agriculture (hog, chicken, turkey barns)
Light Yellow
Single Family (SF) - Agriculture Orange
:: :: ::
Light Green
Dark Green
State Forest
Med. Green
Light Yellow
Residential (SF)
Dark Yellow
Residential (Multiple)
Dark Blue
Public (schools, public water supply, utilities, municipal building)
Cell Tower
Light Blue


Burd Run Interdisciplinary
Watershed Research Laboratory

Shearer Hall
1871 Old Main Dr.
Shippensburg, PA 17257

Email: cjwolt@ship.edu