Department of Urban and Regional Planning   
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign   

UP 503: Site and Physical Planning

Assignment 5b - Water Suitability

In the previous assignment, we looked at the landform characteristics of slope and soil-type as constraints on the location and intensity of development activity. In this assignment, we will focus on the location and movement of water within the county. Like landforms, water is a key factor in determining the suitability of land for various activities. Water resources necessary to sustain life are degraded by development and land use change at the same time that they can pose a hazard to the built environment.

Based on the location of water bodies and networks (watersheds, waterways...), along with the slope characteristics of the surrounding landscape, analyze potential constraining development characteristics (for example you might locate areas feasible for development, requiring development with treatment, or areas unsuitable for development). Make a map or maps explaining your ideas, label and annotate accordingly.

You may want to bring in other shapefiles that you find relevant (eg. streams etc.) to map water flows. Remember that streams would not capture how water flows exactly in the region since these would map current systems while we are assuming little/no development. has pictures of the county from 1940 and may be a good resource to identify the pre-development low spots and creeks. ExpressView Browser Plugin from LizardTech allows you to view the .sid files.

Submit the map(s) and your comments in memo format in a single PDF file formatted as 5b_[Last Name].pdf and submit it in the assignment dropbox before start of next lab on Oct 3.

Return to Course Web Page --->