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Landscapes2 Land Use Analysis

In Chester County 22,000 acres of land were developed between 2000 and 2010. Sixty percent of the growth occurred in Landscapes2 designated Growth Areas. The remaining forty percent occurred in designated Rural Resources Areas. Of the 13,000 acres of growth in Growth Areas, 11,200 acres were located in the suburban landscape. Most of the nearly 9,000 acres of growth in the Rural Resources Areas was located in the rural landscape. The growth raised the total amount of developed land to nearly 168,000 acres, 35% of the county area, in 2010. The majority of developed land (69%) is located in the Growth Areas.

Developed Land Between 2000 and 2010

by Growth Area/Landscape

Table 1: Development Trend in Chester County

    Developed Undeveloped
Landscape Total
Acres
(2010)
Developed (2000) Developed (2010) Developed Change
(2000-2010)
Developed
Percent Change
(2000-2010)
Undeveloped (2000) Undeveloped (2010)
All Landscapes 485,592 145,584 167,753 22,169 15.2% 339,960 317,839
Growth Areas 199,025 102,585 115,781 13,196 12.9% 96,423 83,244
Urban 24,728 15,730 16,835 1,105 7.0% 8,986 7,893
Suburban 166,273 82,603 93,816 11,213 13.6% 83,663 72,457
Suburban Center 8,024 4,252 5,130 878 20.6% 3,774 2,894
Rural Resources Areas 286,567 42,999 51,972 8,973 20.9% 243,537 234,595
Rural 172,597 34,678 41,991 7,313 21.1% 137,892 130,606
Rural Center 5,706 1,870 2,265 395 21.1% 3,837 3,441
Agriculture 108,264 6,451 7,716 1,265 19.6% 101,808 100,548
 
Percentage of Land Area
All Landscapes 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%   100.0% 100.0%
Growth Areas 41.0% 70.5% 69.0% 59.5%   28.4% 26.2%
Rural Resources 59.0% 29.5% 31.0% 40.5%   71.6% 73.8%

1 Developed land uses include, residential, industrial, mining, commercial, transportation, utilities, recreation, and community services.
2 Undeveloped land uses include agriculture, wooded, vacant, and water.
Source: DVRPC

The majority of all land developed was residential land use (74%). This residential growth was nearly evenly split between the Growth Areas (52%) and the Rural Resources Areas (48%). The development in the Growth Areas was primarily in the suburban landscape. The development in the Rural Resources Areas was primarily in the rural landscape.

Almost all of the commercial/industrial development was located in the Growth Areas (97%). The suburban centers received 19% of this development despite containing less than 2% of the county land area. Rural Resources Areas had a very small increase in commercial/industrial land use.

Developed Residential Land Between 2000 and 2010

By Growth Area/Landscape

Developed Commercial/Industrial Land Between 2000 and 2010

By Growth Area/Landscape

Table 2: Changes in Land Use in Chester County

  Developed Undeveloped2
Landscape Total Developed Residential Commercial/ Industrial Other Developed1  
Total 22,169 16,464 1,724 3,981 -22,121
Growth Areas 13,196 8,610 1,665 2,921 -13,179
Urban 1,105 439 54 612 -1,093
Suburban 11,213 7,964 1,275 1,975 -11,206
Suburban Center 878 207 336 335 -880
Rural Resources Areas 8,973 7,854 59 1,060 -8,942
Rural 7,313 6,353 87 873 -7,286
Rural Center 395 299 23 73 -396
Agriculture 1,265 1,202 -51 114 -1,260

1 Other developed land uses include, mining, transportation, utilities, recreation, and community services.
2 Undeveloped land uses include agriculture, wooded, vacant, and water.
Source: DVRPC

Map: Changes in Land Use from 2000 to 2010

This map shows the location of residential and commercial land use in Chester County and the changes from 2000 to 2010.

Map Image