The Mount Vernon Viewshed Analysis Tool: the Intersection of Land Conservation and Historic Preservation
Jeff Allenby, Director of Conservation Technology, The Chesapeake Conservancy
Over the last decade, new technologies and improvements in affordable computing power have allowed for significant advances in the way that researchers and conservation managers are approaching decisions of what land to protect. Publicly available datasets and satellite and aerial imagery have been steadily increasing in resolution and land managers are gaining access to information that allows them to identify, compare, and prioritize potential projects at a parcel scale across entire landscapes. Simultaneously, improvements in the ability to host large quantities of data and analysis tools online are opening new opportunities to share this information with the public to help inform large-landscape conservation planning.
This presentation will highlight a variety of approaches to large landscape conservation in the Chesapeake Bay watershed that are leveraging new technologies to improve their effectiveness and are helping connect conservation organizations to the landscapes in which they are working. A case study using a detailed viewshed analysis to monitor potential development projects across from Mount Vernon will be discussed, as well as the ways that the resulting viewshed application can inform and support collaboration by regional natural and heritage conservation partners.