|Alternative Profit Potentials for Rural Indiana|
Department of Landscape Architecture
Ball State University
project known as Alternative Profit Potentials for Rural Indiana was originally
developed to demonstrate an approach to comprehensive rural development
which looks at regional production networks and individual farm sites simultaneously.
The process attempts to integrate economic, ecological, and social development
strategies, using computer-based information management techniques to capitalize
on new visions for the small to medium-sized farmstead. The case-study
region was in Henry County, Indiana and the case study site was an existing
farmstead along I-70 in Henry County.
The project was conducted as a cooperative effort between the Department of Landscape Architecture and the Center for Energy Research, Education and Service (CERES) at Ball State University, and the Indiana Commissioner's Office for Agriculture and Rural Development.
|The primary goal of this on-going initiative has been to find a way to aid and stimulate the redirection of rural land use toward more effective and profitable agricultural productivity. Crop diversification and value-added processing are the primary means of economic redirection. A larger intent is to reverse the conversion of farmland to irreversable land uses (i.e., urban development, housing development, etc.). The strategy is to maintain appropriate ecological balance and land-resource diversity and to establish a communication and marketing network within Indiana, creating partnersips between untapped urban market demands and unique agricultural and rural-based production.|
Defining the Problem
The case for alternative agriculture
The Structure of the Study
Phase I: Regional Opportunities
A case study for GIS
Phase II: Farm-Site Development
Option One: A community facility
Option Two: A private-sector farm
Option Three: Research and education facility
Phase III: Appropriate Technology Sustainable farmstead design
A Direction for the Future
|The first phase of the project involved a Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping process to determine whether potentially profitable alternative crops can be grown on marginally farmed lands in east central Indiana. The computerized mapping technique was used at the county level initially, with a more detailed study of the 170 acre farm case study site. The farm, once mapped for selected alternative cropping patterns, was then used to examine site-scale design issues. Site issues included alternative layouts of a prototypical farm which could explore various arrangements of alternative crops, energy and work flow relationships, and appropriate technology.|
Author | Last Modification: June, 1998 | Technical comments to the Webmaster
Ball State University practices equal opportunity
in education and employment and is strongly and actively committed to diversity
within its community.
Links contained in this file to information provided by other organizations are presented as a service and neither constitute nor imply endorsement or warranty.