Ecological planning methods are examined under two main headings: Landscape Suitability Approach I (LSA I) and Landscape Suitability Approach II (LSA II). The five methods of the LSA-I that uses natural landscape characteristics in determining the suitability of a piece of land for a certain land use are as follows: the Gestalt method, the Natural Resources
Conservation Service capability system, the physiographic-unit method, the resource – pattern method, and the suitability method. Landscape suitability approach II brought about some refinements and new approaches in both theory and method. The suitability of the landscape is determined by the dialectical balance between the economic, social and biophysical factors. The methods of LSA II are landscape classification method, landscape – resource survey method, allocation-evaluation method, strategic suitability method, Australian approach to regional land use planning, Steiner method and Golany method (Tozar & Aya§ligil, 2008).
In the last three decades, the growing social consciousness about the negative effects of human activity on the nature and the increasing number of environmental laws worldwide necessitated the development of nature protection methods. Consequently, significant theoretical developments took place in LSA. The variations of LSA are among the most common methods used in ecologic planning. The LSA methods are applied in two basic stages (Tozar & Aya§ligil, 2008). In these stages,
• The area is divided into identical cells (similar features and same dimensions), and
• The suitability of each cell could be analysed according to different criteria and techniques for each type of land use.