Using linear integer programming for multi-site land-use allocation

Jeroen C.J.H. Aerts*, Erwin Eisinger, Gerard B.M. Heuvelink, Theodor J. Stewart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Research in the area of spatial decision support (SDS) and resource allocation has recently generated increased attention for integrating optimization techniques with GIS. In this paper we address the use of spatial optimization techniques for solving multi-site land-use allocation (MLUA) problems, where MLUA refers to the optimal allocation of multiple sites of different land uses to an area. We solve an MLUA problem using four different integer programs (IP), of which three are linear integer programs. The IPs are formulated for a raster-based GIS environment and are designed to minimize development costs and to maximize compactness of the allocated land use. The preference for either minimizing costs or maximizing compactness has been made operational by including a weighting factor. The IPs are evaluated on their speed and their efficacy for handling large databases. All four IPs yielded the optimal solution within a reasonable amount of time, for an area of 8 × 8 cells. The fastest model was successfully applied to a case study involving an area of 30 × 30 cells. The case study demonstrates the practical use of linear IPs for spatial decision support issues.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-169
Number of pages22
JournalGeographical Analysis
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2003


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