Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Community and Regional Planning


Community and Regional Planning


Community and Regional Planning


This research creates a conceptual open space planning process model and a demonstration model that uses GIS (Geographic Information System) software as a means to determine solutions. The conceptual open space planning process model integrated 1) citizen participation and intergovernmental staff cooperation, 2) planning concepts, and 3) sustainability principles. The demonstration model displayed GIS applications through the use of ArcView GIS 3.2 and Spatial Analyst's ModelBuilder extension. Methods pertaining to GIS as a planning tool aid a community in decision-making as part of the planning process for the efficient implementation of a sustainable open space. As communities continue to urbanize, there is an increasing need and demand for public open space. An open space was defined as containing environmentally sensitive land, and providing social and recreational aspects for the enjoyment of local citizen populations. Sustainability principles, as related to open spaces, are comprised of three interrelated pillar values: social, economic, and environmental. Community developments in the form of sustainable open spaces meet the social demands and desires of local citizens, while also benefiting a community economically and promoting natural progression environmentally. The resulting models produced in the report are substantiated and related back to techniques and applications for the implementation of sustainable open spaces in local communities. It was recommended that decision-makers, planners, community stakeholders, and the general public work together to explore the options of acquiring, establishing, funding, and protecting a sustainable open space once its location has been determined. The end-results of this investigation aid as a planning resource for citizens and planners looking for options and recommendations to implement, preserve, and protect, sustainable open spaces within their local communities.


Copyright Owner

Elizabeth Wightman Kenaston



OCLC Number


File Format


File Size

122 pages