The output of the criteria layers created for slope, soil type, distance from roads, distance for urban areas, distance from open water and ground water depth are shown in Figures 4 - 11. Two layers were created for land use; in the first layer farmland was given a higher suitability value as an industrial park could be built on this land without cutting down forested areas making it a more environmentally conscientious option (Figure 10). There is also a significant amount of farmland in this region and therefore, would create a greater number of possible siting options. In Figure 11 farmland was given a lower suitability value and forested areas were given a higher value. The higher suitability value given to forested areas in this example, reflects the economic perspective that purchasing and clearing forested land would result in lower costs and may be easier to obtain than the potential difficulty and high costs associated with purchasing private farmland.
After applying the MCE formula, an industrial park suitability analysis was conducted by combining the constraint and criteria layers with scores ranging from 0 for the constraint areas (including wetlands, roads and developed areas) to progressively more suitable areas with values as high as 88.495. The first map created used the environmental land use layer where farmland had been given a higher suitability value. The second map was generated by applying the economic land use layer where farmland areas had been given a lower value and forested areas a higher value. In these maps, the darker the shade of red, the more suitable the site is for an industrial park. In comparing both the environmental suitability and the economic suitability maps (Figures 12 and 13), it is clear that a greater number of potential sites are identified when farmland was assigned a higher suitability value (Figure 12). The purple areas in both maps reflect the constraint areas where building an industrial park is not possible. These areas consist of 5,510.91 hectares of wetland, 12,481.94 hectares of roads and 51,536.37 hectares of developed areas for a total of 69,529.22 hectares of land. As there are 11,510.03 hectares where these areas overlap (where road networks run through a developed area, for example), only 58,019.19 hectares of land was actually eliminated from further consideration.
In the next step, threshold values were applied to the suitability maps in order to isolate values above a certain level of suitability. When a threshold of 65 was applied, a number of options were identified for both the environmental and economic model including some overlap in these areas as shown in Figure 14.
When applying a threshold of 70 (Figure 15), over 30 environmental sites were identified and only two economic sites large enough for an industrial park were identified. One of the economic sites was located in the northern area of the region, just slightly west of Halton Hills, and the other site was located northwest of Milton and just north of the Highway 401 corridor.
A threshold of 75 was then applied which resulted in only one economic model site being identified. Unfortunately, as this site was too small to accommodate a 50-hectare industrial park, it could not be considered further in our analysis. There were however, a number of environmental model sites identified which were large enough to accommodate an industrial park. As depicted in Figure 16 the majority of these sites were located north of the Highway 401 corridor between Milton and Georgetown. There are also several sites located in the northwest area of the region and another seven sites located south of Highway 401. These seven sites are split with four in the southwest quadrant and three in the southeast quadrant of the region.
In order to determine the sites with the best overall score to accommodate a 50-hectare industrial park, a threshold of 72 was applied to the Economic model, which resulted in one site just west of Halton Hills being selected (Figure 17). A threshold of 81 was applied to the Environmental model resulting in 3 selected sites. Two of these sites are located slightly south-west of Milton and the third site is located in the northeast quadrant of the region, between Georgetown and Halton Hills (Figure 18).