Farmland Preservation Plan
HGA was retained by Atlantic County to update the County’s Draft 2011 Farmland Preservation Plan. The County received grant money under the Phase II Post-Sandy Grant Program to update the County Master Plan which included the Farmland Preservation Plan. The Plan was developed in accordance with the New Jersey State Agricultural Development Committee County Farmland Preservation Plan guidelines. These guidelines include providing information dealing with the following:
• Atlantic County’s Agricultural Land Base
• Atlantic County’s Agricultural Industry- Overview
• Land Use Planning Context
• County Farmland Preservation Program- Overview
• Future Farmland Preservation
• Economic Development
• Natural Resource Conservation
• Sustainability of Atlantic County’s Agricultural Industry
This comprehensive Farmland Plan was prepared using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) extensively, particularly for identifying existing farmland using parcel maps and tax assessment data, soils data, regulatory agency (State Development and Redevelopment Plan Planning Areas, Coastal Area Facilities Review Management Areas, Pinelands Management Areas) information, County Designated Regions, land use land cover data, loss of agricultural lands based upon the land use land cover, preserved open space, municipal zoning, and SADC approved Agricultural Development Areas.
The Plan provides a comprehensive study of agriculture in Atlantic County, in an effort to explore ways in which to preserve and enhance this important industry. The County’s Comprehensive Farmland Preservation Plan explores the history of agriculture in Atlantic County, its role in the area’s economy, and how today’s actions will ensure its future viability. The Plan is currently in the process of being adopted by Atlantic County as an element of the County Master Plan.