Land Use & Land Cover Classes
Definitions and Descriptions
1. URBAN OR BUILT-UP LAND
Farmsteads are homes, generally isolated from other residences, associated
with agricultural fields. This includes vegetable gardens, yards, barns,
other out-buildings and storage areas.
12. Residential--Old Urban/High Density
Old urban is high-density urban residential land used for homes that are
spaced closely, set back from the street, and arranged in orderly,
rectangular patterns on lots less than 1/2 acre in size. Yards have mature
trees. Includes high density categories such as trailer parks and
13. Residential--New Subdivision
New subdivision land is used for generally high density residences less
than 20 years old. Houses are closely spaced, set back from the street
and often are in non-geometric patterns. Cul-de-sacs are common.
Trees are immature. Lot size is 1/8 to 1/2 acre.
Rural residential is open, very light density residential. Lots are
generally between one and five acres.
15. Commercial & Industrial
Land used for manufacture, distribution and merchandising goods and
services. Goods manufactured include small appliances, electronics and
other secondary products. Merchandising areas include stores, offices,
gas stations, restaurants, parking areas, motels and small warehouses.
This land is usually located in strips along heavily traveled routes,
in the core area in the center of a city or in large shopping centers.
Urban public land includes parks, colleges, churches, hospitals,
cemeteries, schools and associated grounds; state and federal facilities.
Recreation areas include golf courses, stadiums, driving ranges, race
tracks, campgrounds and other areas for outdoor recreation.
Transportation corridors include railroad rights-of-way and marshaling
yards and major highways that do not follow Public Land Survey System
19. Sewage Treatment
Sewage treatment plants including settling ponds, lagoons, filter beds
and associated buildings.
2. AGRICULTURAL LAND
21. Irrigated Cropland and Pasture
Land presently being irrigated, land irrigated during the present growing
season or land fallowed either from water shortage or crop rotation. With
the exception of alfalfa, crops grown are harvested once per growing
season. A crop can be presently in the field, recently harvested or the
field can be prepped for cultivation. Land that is in transition from
irrigated to developed should be called "Transition Agriculture".
Perennial includes orchards, vineyards and nurseries.
Land out of production for more than one season, but not permanently
abandoned to agriculture. The irrigation infrastructure remains intact.
24. Land in Transition (farmland to urban or built-up land)
This is agricultural land that usually is in the process of being developed
for housing, commercial use or other non-agricultural purposes. Generally
the land has identifiable agricultural patterns, but is not prepped for a
crop. Often, the land shows disturbance other than that associated with
farming. The land is frequently found next to or mixed with land on which
construction is occurring.
Land used for feeding, processing or warehousing of animals, such as
cattle or sheep, bound for market. Includes pens, feeding areas, slurry
lagoons, manure piles and associated facilities. This does not include any
associated pasture or crop land.
Land used for the purpose of dairy production from cows or goats.
Includes barns, storage areas, feeding areas, slurry lagoons, manure piles
and associated facilities. This does not include any associated pasture
or crop land.
27. Abandoned Agriculture
Land taken out of production. Land cover may be annual weeds or young
perennial shrubs. There should be some evidence of the land having been
irrigated at some time in the past, such as stacked pipe, a faint
circular scar or overgrown ditches.
28. Other Agricultural Land
Agricultural land not otherwise described.
Land that supports wild vegetation: grasses forbs and shrubs. It may be
grazed, but is not irrigated.
Open bodies of water, including artificial lakes and ponds, reservoirs,
settling ponds and rivers. This does not include sewage or slurry lagoons.
Land that is identifiable on mid-summer photography as being either wet
or adjacent to a water-body.
6. Barren Land
Any land that is devoid of vegetation. This includes lave flows, sand
and gravel bars and rock outcrops. Areas that have recently been scraped
bare by heavy equipment should be called "Land in Transition" (# 24)
Major feeder canals in the area. This includes the actual canal plus any
associated right-of-way lands and roads that may be evident. This class
includes, but is not limited to, the New York, Ridenbaugh, Phyllis, Deer
Flat Low Line, Golden Gate, Riverside, Middleton and Farmers' Union canals.
This set of definitions was developed specifically for the Boise Valley Project
of the definitions are modified from those found in:
MacConnell, Wm. P.; 1973; Massachusetts Mapdown Land-Use and Vegetative
Classification Manual; Publication No. 97, December 1973; Cooperative Extension
Service; University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Mass.