Proper siting or location

Choosing the proper location for a proposed project is one of the easiest design techniques to understand and apply, and one that will normally yield the most dramatic results.

The following considerations can be helpful in choosing a project location:

  • Visual contrasts or impacts decrease as the distance between the viewer and the proposed development increases, so projects should be located as far away from prominent viewing locations as possible.
  • The human eye is naturally drawn to prominent topographic features, so projects should not be located on or near such features.
  • The shape and placement of projects should be designed to blend with topographic forms and existing vegetation patterns.
  • Both topographic features and vegetation should be used to screen proposed development.

Following are some examples of proper and improper siting or location:

Click on the following images to see a larger image

Natural vegetation, earth mounding, or architectural treatments can be used to screen development.
Using existing openings, lines, and shapes in the landscape can help reduce visual impacts.
This water tank is set back from the crest of the hill, thereby reducing the visual impact; however, the access road could have been better located.

This road alignment repeats the forms and lines found in this landscape and it fits easily on the natural terrain.
This communications site avoids the high peak in this landscape; however, the color selection could have been better.
This overhead electrical line repeats the natural lines of the landscape while avoiding the strong contrast associated with clearing the right-of-way.


Locating these rights-of-way in heavily wooded areas causes strong contrasts