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GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sept. 26, 2016 – Moderate projections suggest that Florida’s population will reach approximately 33.7 million residents by 2070 – almost 15 million more people than in 2010. To gauge the impact of that growing population, the University of Florida’s GeoPlan Center, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and 1000 Friends of Florida developed a series of GIS-based state and regional maps to explore alternative scenarios for growth and development.

“Our goal is to generate informed discussion on how our state develops over the next fifty years,” says 1000 Friends President Ryan Smart.

The study, Florida 2070, “clearly shows that what may seem like small conservation and development decisions we make today have significant, long-term ramifications,” says 1000 Friends Communications Director Vivian Young.

Florida 2070 has a series of statewide and regional baseline maps depicting development and conservation lands in 2010, trend maps showing how Florida will develop if current development patterns continue to 2070, and alternative maps showing the impact of more compact development patterns and greater land conservation.

“The growing power of geographic information systems (GIS) and the extensive data available for Florida allow us to develop complex representations of alternative future scenarios for Florida,” says Peggy Carr of UF’s GeoPlan Center. “Clearly land is a finite resource and the decisions made about its use need to account for our long term future.”

An interactive website provides an overview of the project, recommendations to promote more efficient development patterns, links to interactive state and regional maps, a summary report and a technical report outlining methodology.

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