Saturday, November 15, 2008

Module 2 Site Selection and Resource Analysis

“For every site, there is an ideal use. For every use, there is an ideal site”

Site Selection Criteria

GROSS SITE SELECTION - most preferable site in a larger milieu.

DISCRETE SITE SELECTION - sites within the locale identified in the gross site selection process

FUNCTIONAL SITE SELECTION - done in a big site where project is just part of the whole. Provide a “best use analysis” to determine best spot.


Formulation should be based on the specific site needs of the project.

Establishes site values highly compatible with the requirements of the project

Considered as the most potent ones in creating the tone for site selection


Factors that are usually considered and is generally applicable to most type of projects, like utility systems, accessibility, and the like.

Devise rating scale:

 Numerical rating:
3 – highly desirable
2 – desirable
1 - undesirable

Baseline Information

The process of site planning begins with the gathering of basic data relating specifically to the site under consideration and the surrounding areas.

This include such items as:
a. assessment of the natural environment and the associated physical characteristics of site
b. detailed analysis of the users
c. assessment of potential of site
d. assessment of possibilities
e. assessing the impact on the natural and visual environments

Systematic Summary of Findings
Information must be organized to permit an easy evaluation of the possible development options.

Sieve-mapping – an overlay method of mapping natural determinants used to determine the suitability of a particular site for prospective land uses.

Sieve mapping can be done manually using acetates or vellum, or thru the use of computer softwares like CADD and GIS.

a. each natural factor like geology and soils is illustrated in maps on vellum or acetate.
b. Opportunity maps are produced from a composite of maps.
c. Constraint maps – constraints to development must be mapped for each component to show their influence on development.
d. Synthesis of opportunities and constraints is formed to produce a suitability map for a prospective use.

Summary of Site Analysis:

One of the most important parts of any comprehensive site evaluation, a summary site analysis illustrates the interrelationship of a site’s spatial, natural, and cultural conditions

The analysis should delineate the portion of the parcel most suited to development as well as any ecologically sensitive areas.
Areas in need of more detailed evaluation also should be identified.

Analysis should be straightforward and present information in its most basic and meaningful form.

Site features or conditions that most directly affect the development of the land should be graphically highlighted and illustrated.

Maps should include obvious factors such as rock outcroppings or wetlands as well as more subtle considerations such as the direction of a prevailing breeze or an unusual specimen tree.

Market Evaluation

Should be prepared concurrently with the site evaluation to determine a project’s likely market demand and the site’s realistic development and absorption potential.

Market operates according to traditions and principles that cannot be ignored.

Investigation should extend to the following:
a. Economic Factors
- economic conditions, trends, employment of prospective market

b. Demographic and psychographic factors
- income levels, age components, lifestyle
- who are the potential market?
- how does the local market differ from the overall metropolitan market?

c. Competitive factors
- How many competitors?
- What are their strengths and weaknesses?
- How well is it designed and marketed?
- What is needed to create a unique selling position?

d. Site Evaluation
- unlike site analysis, site evaluation examines area character, consumer traffic patterns, area services, and access routes from the consumer’s point of view.
- what is the overall perception of site location?
- is there a ready market to be tapped?
- what will consumers see on their way to the site that may influence their perceptions?

e. Demand determination
- who are the prospective users?
- what are their needs, wants, and desires?
- how will demand be satisfied?

f. Site programming
- based on market demand and development goals, specific land planning design recommendations should take into consideration theme, circulation patterns, relationship to adjacent sites, waterscaping or sitescaping, etc.

Alternative Plans and Concepts

Land and site evaluations are merged with the preliminary market information to test the program and to evaluate alternative layout concepts

Alternative solutions should be presented in diagrammatic for, enough at first to record only the essentials of a scheme.

Strategies for developing alternative site plans:
a. do not be satisfied with the first solution.
b. do not assume that there is only one way to make a proposed project work.
c. ask questions that elicit multiple answers.
d. recognize that a lot of ideas create better solutions.
e. ask “what if” questions
f. challenge the rules.

Selecting the Preferred Development Concept

Which solution….
a. …best satisfies the development’s program requirements and best fits the site?
b. …best satisfies the quality-of-place objectives established for the proposed project?
c. …can be implemented? The preferred solution is not necessarily the easiest one to implement.
d. …provides reasonable cost benefits?

Preferred development concept is likely to reflect a combination of several ideas uncovered through the comparison of alternative plans.

The opportunities and constraints related to the development criteria, development standards, local regulations should also be considered in the selection.

Final Development Plan

The planning and design process requires constant refinement and adjustment.

Feedback and continued testing should be an integral part of every phase as the plans move closer to completion.

Prepare schematic plans, preliminary development plans, phasing plans, final development plans

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