This thesis explores the utilization of GIS in city planning. To obtain a better understanding of the product, previous literature on GIS and theory of planning was researched. A survey was then designed from this literature and mailed to municipalities in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Michigan. The purpose of the study was to ascertain if GIS is directing planning towards any certain planning model. The results from the survey were entered into SPSS, and descriptive statistics and cross tabs were performed. The independent variable in the cross tab was city size, while the various components of the models were the dependent variables. These models were the land use design plan, the land classification plan, the development management plan, and the hybrid plan. The results revealed that GIS is only being used as a tool for the planning process and that it is not directing planning in any one direction. The municipalities are using the program for such things as general and detailed mapping, public policy, and the issues of transportation and land use. All of the participants found GIS to be very efficient andworthwhile. The descriptive results are important because this is the first study performed on the use of GIS. Future research should focus on how GIS is being used as a tool and should be conducted across a wider area of the country to determine whether region affects the use as well.


Fitz Gibbon, Heather


Urban Studies

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis

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