Electronic Field Guide » Pre-Development Issues

Prepared by Patrick Drohan (Ecosystem Science and Management)

Before a project begins, it is important to carefully consider what the on- or off-property landscape change might be.  Take the time to collect as much information as possible about your property. This information can inform you, and potentially make you and your operator aware of other options for site development.  In addition, thinking through all the phases of the project before activity begins helps to avoid surprises.  Examples of useful information may include:

  • historical maps
  • topographic information
  • soil and geologic information
  • vegetation maps or data
  • water resource information
  • stream and wetland maps
  • future property plans
  • a schedule of operator activities and extent of vehicle operations.
Understanding the evolution of your property's landscape is a good starting point for estimating how your property might respond to development.  An excellent resource that explains Pennsylvania's landscape evolution and its soils can be found in the Penn State Agronomy Guide.