Land Use Trends and Futures

The Department’s Natural History Survey is using aerial photography to examine the historical growth patterns (from early 1970s to 1999) of the major metropolitan areas in Illinois and the natural resources that were impacted by this expansion. They also examine the extent of natural resources threatened by future urban growth.

For information on development patterns in the Chicago area go to the Open Lands Project home page and download their report, Under Pressure: Land Consumption in Chicago. This report includes maps of current and projected changes in land use in the Chicago region.

At some point in the future, the Department hopes to conduct a more detailed forecasts of urban expansion in the other urban centers of Illinois.

Contact: Tom Heavisides
Illinois Department of Natural Resources
One Natural Resources Way
Springfield, Illinois 62702


Illinois Department of Natural Resources
Office of Realty and Environmental Planning