Land Development : Site Analysis

Land Development : Site Analysis

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In Land Development : Getting the Foundations Right, you were introduced to the importance of covering all three bases equally – physical planning, project economics, and market forces.

In this part we begin to look at physical planning in detail – starting with Site Analysis.  Before engaging the master planner you need to fully understand the site in terms of Physical Attributes, Accessibility and Planning Requirements.  One of the best ways to kick off this process is to actually walk the site!

Physical Attributes:

  • Topography (ie lay of the land)
  • Flora and fauna  (ie plants and animals)
  • Environmentally Protected zones (like mangroves)
  • Subsoil conditions (the underground soil type)
  • Tidal conditions (if the site is next to the ocean)

Site Accessibility:

  • Transport accessibility (ie how to get to-from the site)
  • Infrastructure accessibility (where’s the power, water, telecom supply coming from)

Planning Requirements:

  • Site Zoning (ie commercial, industrial, residential or mixed use)
  • Development Density (how much built up area are you allowed to develop)

All the information gathered from site analysis will be important to begin master planning.  Why? Because it allows you to determine the best locations for real estate development – which impacts your income stream. And the areas that are poor for real estate development you turn into supporting uses.  The site analysis will also help you answer these questions : Where are the key access routes for say, road and rail? Where are the best views that command a premium land value? Where’s the flora and fauna that’s good to conserve as parklands or turn into eco-tourism attractions?  Where are the poor subsoil areas to avoid? And many more.

Photo by: Sharkbait

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