Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment

Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment (LVIA) is the technique used to assess the effects of change on the landscape.

LVIA is used to help design the proposed change as well as assess its effects, so that negative landscape effects are avoided, reduced or offset. Where a development is likely to have negative impacts on landscape, LVIA usually forms part of the environmental assessment. It can also be used as part of the appraisal of development proposals and planning applications.

The proposed change might be a:

  • new road
  • housing
  • wind farm or wind turbines
  • mineral extraction
  • plan for forest felling and restocking

LVIA examines two independent but related aspects:

  • landscape effects
  • visual effects

Guidelines for Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment (3rd edition) is the standard methodology. All relevant professional institutes recommend it as good practice.

We have also produced guidance on the design, effects and assessment of various development types such as wind farms and aquaculture.

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