Who Shapes the Visual Landscape, and Does It Matter?

November 16, 2013

Forested landscapes are valued throughout the Northwest. However, land-use plans and programs result in the creation of landscape patterns that may not always be pleasing to the viewing public. Do planners and policy makers have an obligation to make decisions more compatible with people’s needs? If so, are there ways to foster participation to ensure that people’s aesthetic concerns are met? While many land-use requirements focus on economic, ecological and other welfare considerations, they do not have to result in landscapes that compromise our visual preferences.