Vol. 47, No. 2, Fall/Winter 2009- "The Pennsylvania Geographer"



CAVE CLIMATOLOGY OF LAUREL CAVERNS, PENNSYLVANIA


Stephen Vermette

Department of Geography and Planning

Buffalo State College

and Lisa Hall

Laurel Caverns Geological Park

Uniontown, Pennsylvania


Abstract


Laurel Caverns is a commercial cave located in southwest Pennsylvania. The cave was instrumented with Hobo (Onset Corporation) data loggers to monitor hourly averaged air temperature and relative humidity for a one year period (November 2006 to November 2007). The mean annual cave temperature ranged between 50.1oF in the developed section of the cave to 48.9oF in the undeveloped section. Both sections of the cave recorded a low temperature of 47.5oF to 48.2oF, reflecting the natural equilibrium temperature of the cave. The developed section of the cave exhibits definite seasonal and diurnal temperature patterns. The undeveloped section of the cave exhibits little temperature variability, although a one-time spike in temperatures was recorded. Relative humidity remained at 100% for much of the sampling period, although levels dropped to between 75% and 85% at two sites near the end of the sampling

period. Proxy methods for determining temperature were effective.





COLONIAL SETTLEMENT PATTERNS IN PENNSYLVANIA’S CUMBERLAND VALLEY


Christopher Barner


Abstract


During the 1700s as the frontier moved westward through Pennsylvania’s Cumberland Valley, the rate of settlement outran the ability of the colonial government to regulate it. This scramble for land, initially unhindered by any outside interference, reveal individual preferences for settlement locations. By analyzing early land records and comparing them to geographic factors in the landscape, we can learn a great deal about the motives of these early settlers and about settlement patterns in general. This paper uses a mapping- and statistics based analysis of the settlement process to draw conclusions about historic

individuals as well as general motivations for settlement.





CONSERVATION DESIGN IN CHESTER COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA:

ASSESSING PRESERVATION OUTCOMES


Dorothy Ives-Dewey

Geography and Planning Department

West Chester University


Daniel Fitz-Patrick

Regional Planning

West Chester University


Abstract


Conservation development has become a widely accepted residential development option in suburban areas in Pennsylvania. As an alternative to conventional, sprawl settlement patterns, conservation development is touted as a land development form that can more effectively preserve natural resources at both the site level and over a region. Based on a sample of completed conservation developments in Chester County, Pennsylvania, this research empirically assesses the outcome of these projects in regard to preservation of

selected natural features. The features that are tested include steep slopes, woodlands and open space. The results indicate that conservation development is more effective at preserving open space and moderate and steep slopes than woodlands. The findings have implications for the design of effective regulations of conservation development to better preserve all natural features.





CURRENT APPLICATION OF REMOTE SENSING TECHNIQUES IN LAND USE MAPPING: A CASE STUDY OF NORTHERN PARTS OF KOLHAPUR DISTRICT, INDIA


Ehsan Golmehr

Geosciences Department

Mississippi State University


Abstract


Land use mapping is important for evaluation, management and conservation of natural resources of an area and the knowledge on the existing land use is one of the prime pre-requisites for suggesting better use of land. In this study, we examined four mapping approaches (unsupervised, supervised, fuzzy supervised and GIS post-processing) to identify, demarcate and map the agricultural land use categories in the Northern parts of Kolhapur district, India. A fuzzy c-means clustering algorithm for supervised classification approach was applied to prepare multi-layer class map and distance map. For the accuracy assessment a random stratified sampling method was used to allocate the sample size for each land use based on its spatial extent. Finally, the extracted land use map was classified into six major groups, namely forest, cultivated land, range land, waste land, water bodies and built-up land.






THE FRONTIER IS DEAD, LONG LIVE THE FRONTIER: RESPONSES TO THE OFFICIAL “CLOSING” OF THE AMERICAN SETTLEMENT FRONTIER


Mark A. Blumler

Deptartment of Geography

SUNY-Binghamton, NY



Abstract


The official “closing” of the American frontier after the 1890 census was influential in the rise of the modern environmental movement, which promoted living within our means, sustainably. But it also was followed by numerous attempts to create substitute frontiers, so as to sustain the growth and expansion

that were characteristic of the American frontier period, as of all frontiers. Several of these attempts failed, while others succeeded, at least temporarily and in purely economic terms. This leaves us in a sticky situation today, needing to somehow continue to develop frontiers, or lapse back into “normal” conditions, with the enormous readjustments that would be necessary given that we have

gone so far down this frontier path.





QUANTITATIVE MAPPING AND POPULATION RESTRUCTURING: MIGRATION, DIFFUSION, AND ECONOMIC CHANGE IN ALLEGHENY COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA


Nicholas A. Wise

Department of Geography and Regional Planning

Indiana University of Pennsylvania


Abstract


Recent historical and global factors have influenced migration in and out of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County. The populations of Allegheny County and the city of Pittsburgh have been declining since the 1960s, influenced by economic restructuring. This study looks at population growths and declines within Allegheny County and the spatial distribution of where people are migrating domestically. Pittsburgh’s most recent response to population decline is the ‘renaissance.’ Through the ‘renaissance,’ the city government’s focus is urban revitalization, redevelopment, and expansion of amenities to promote a progressive image. Applying mixed methods, United States census figures were used to analyze population redistributions by county subdivision, and the county-to-county migrations. A multiple regression predicts the population figures for 2010, and by incorporating qualitative data, including newspaper articles and secondary sources, the way the city of Pittsburgh is restructuring and attempting to combat declining trends in population is determined.



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